Burton scholarships help four students at Kansas State Polytechnic put their dreams in flight

By Kimberly Bird

Four professional pilot students have been selected to receive the 2017-2018 Connor Burton scholarship, from top left: Mychal Akers, Junction City; Nahuel Bugosen, Kansas City, Missouri; Chad Frerichs, Aledo, Texas; and Michael Edwards, Dallas, Texas.

Four Kansas State University Polytechnic Campus students have received a significant boost to their dream of being professional pilots with the help of $10,000 scholarships from the Connor Burton Aviation fund.

The newest Burton scholars, all in Kansas State Polytechnic’s professional pilot program, are Mychal Akers, Junction City; Nahuel Bugosen, Kansas City, Missouri; Chad Frerichs, Aledo, Texas; and Michael Edwards, Dallas, Texas. Their scholarships are split between their junior and senior years and help pay for flying time or books and tuition, enabling the students to earn their flight certificates more quickly.

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American Airlines Flight Education Grant boosts Kansas State Polytechnic aviation education outreach efforts

By Beth Drescher

Ben Jaffee, left, senior assistant chief flight instructor, and Kirsten Zoller, training and event coordinator, accept a $25,000 grant from American Airlines on behalf of Kansas State University Polytechnic Campus.

Thanks to a $25,000 grant from American Airlines, plans are taking off on the Kansas State University Polytechnic Campus to help more secondary students learn what it’s like to be an airplane pilot.

The grant, designed to increase enrollment in Kansas State Polytechnic’s professional pilot degree program, will fund construction of a mobile aircraft simulator lab, support short introductory flights for prospective pilot students and sponsor middle and high school student scholarships to the campus’s aviation youth Discover Programs.

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Sky’s the limit for Kansas State Polytechnic student and his dream of flying


Jacob Cowart, center, with, from left, Daniel Orpin, Federal Aviation Administration; Laura Cowart, Cowart’s mother; and Jim Crisp, Federal Aviation Administration. All played an integral part in the approval process of a hand control installation in a Kansas State Polytechnic airplane, making it possible for Cowart to learn how to fly and earn his degree.

By Kimberly Bird

When Kansas State University Polytechnic student Jacob Cowart was 12 years old, he went to a flight camp where he was able to take the controls and fly. After that, he was hooked on flying.

But the process of piloting an airplane is not easy for Cowart, who has been wheelchair-bound most of his life. Airplanes are not typically equipped with the necessary equipment to allow for operation via hand control, which attaches to the rudder pedals in the airplane and provides the pilot the ability to maneuver and control the aircraft rudder and brakes. According to Federal Aviation Administration rules, installing a hand control to operate an aircraft is a major alteration, which requires careful overview and inspection by an aviation safety inspector with the agency and can include test flights as well.

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Kansas State Polytechnic builds new physics lab as experiential learning space

By Julee Cobb

Professor Richard Zajac stands in the new physics lab on the Kansas State University Polytechnic Campus, a space he and his students utilize for both lectures and experiential learning.

The Kansas State University Polytechnic Campus is continuing to advance its mission of providing hands-on education to its students with the opening of a brand-new experiential learning space.

A state-of-the-art physics laboratory has been built in the campus’s Technology Center with the purpose of blending classroom lectures with research and experimentation. The almost 2,000-square-foot room is equipped with a variety of technologies and amenities — such as a whiteboard projector, dual table monitors and open storage for equipment shopping — that encourage a learning-by-doing experience.

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Kansas State Polytechnic students visit Washington, D.C. to learn aviation policymaking

By Julee Cobb

Kansas State Polytechnic students enrolled in an aviation legislation course visit the U.S. Senate during a recent trip to Washington, D.C. From left: Frederic Peters, professor Troy Brockway, Logan Welch, Skylar Caldwell, Maxamillyan Badgett, Keegan Swanson, Christopher Pennington, Jerad Jaros, Evan Fowler, Josh White and Joshua Rigsby. Not pictured: Megan Laubhan.

Students from Kansas State University’s Polytechnic Campus received a unique learning opportunity during winter intersession when they traded in their classroom for the United States capital.

Eleven students enrolled in an aviation legislation course at Kansas State Polytechnic visited Washington, D.C. Jan. 2-5 to experience how aviation policy is made. The students, who range from three different degree options – professional pilot, airport management and technology management – attended the University Aviation Association’s Aviation Policy Seminar where they studied a variety of current industry challenges, met with aviation professionals and lawmakers, and networked with students from other colleges and universities.

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Kansas State Polytechnic offers free drone tips webinar and live question-and-answer session

Unmanned aircraft systems, more commonly known as drones, are popular gifts over the holiday season and a widespread hobby for flying enthusiasts. Many systems are sold and marketed as ready to fly; however, it is important that consumers are up-to-date with important regulations and safety practices.

Kansas State Polytechnic is offering a free webinar and live question-and-answer session with Kansas State University UAS experts to discuss important safety practices, flying rules and regulations, and tips for operating your UAS.

Join the Kansas State Polytechnic UAS experts at 7 p.m. Tuesday, Jan. 9, to discuss the difference between hobby and commercial UAS operations, safety considerations when operating your UAS, important Federal Aviation Administration rules, and regulations to ensure compliance when operating your system. The webinar is free, but registration is required.

Kansas State Polytechnic is an expert in the UAS industry and has been part of numerous research projects advising rules and regulations in the industry. Kansas State Polytechnic offers two UAS bachelor’s degrees, in which students are provided a hands-on experience and research opportunities with industry.

Register online for the free webinar. Contact the Kansas State Polytechnic Professional Education and Outreach office with questions at 855-552-0079. Schedule your personalized campus visit with Kansas State Polytechnic admissions online or by calling 785-826-2640.

K-State Polytechnic and Kansas Wesleyan team up for Purple Friday

Kansas Wesleyan University and Kansas State Polytechnic have partnered together with the Salina Area Chamber of Commerce, Rocking M Media and Salina-area businesses to help promote pride in both KWU and K-State Polytechnic with the Purple Friday promotion.

The promotion officially launches on Friday, December 15 with no set end date.

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Keeping Salina Warm: Kansas State Polytechnic social work students create homelessness simulation, fundraiser for senior project

By Julee Cobb

When seven seniors in the social work degree option on the Kansas State University Polytechnic Campus decided to gather warm clothing for three local agencies, they had hoped to receive 100 winter coat donations. After only 30 minutes of their seven-hour-long collection drive, the students surpassed their goal and even amassed boxes and bags filled with scarves, gloves and hats.

The fundraiser was a part of the seniors’ final project in Social Work Macro Practice and Theory, a class focused on promoting change within a community, rather than an individual. The students – Stacy Crumble, Gina Nelson-Fishel, Lexi Gasper, Hali Norris, Katrina Ramirez, Maritza Rodriguez and Tammy Trepoy – wanted to use their project to shine a light on the local homeless population and decided to create an event that would be both philanthropic and educational.

Seven seniors in the social work degree option on the Polytechnic Campus created Keeping Salina Warm – an event designed to educate the public about homelessness. The students include Stacy Crumble, Gina Nelson-Fishel, Lexi Gasper, Hali Norris, Katrina Ramirez, Maritza Rodriguez (not pictured) and Tammy Trepoy.


From 5 p.m. to midnight on Dec. 1, the social work students held Keeping Salina Warm, which encouraged attendees to donate winter clothing items while learning about homelessness. Participants experienced what it would be like to be without adequate shelter on a cold night through a simulation held outside the Student Life Center on campus with tents and cardboard boxes. Dinner also was served in the style of a soup kitchen and representatives of the Salina Rescue Mission, Ashby House and Domestic Violence Association of Central Kansas talked with guests about their experiences with and services for people who need help getting back on their feet.

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Kansas State Polytechnic Flight Team selects new captain

By Julee Cobb

Maddie Perry, junior in professional pilot, Wichita, has been selected as captain of the Kansas State Polytechnic Flight Team.

The flight team on the Kansas State University Polytechnic Campus has a brand-new leader.

Maddie Perry, Wichita, junior in professional pilot, was selected to serve as team captain at the recent annual officer elections. She is currently the only woman on the Kansas State Polytechnic Flight Team, which is comprised of 25 members ranging from freshmen to seniors. As the team’s leader, Perry will be in charge of fundraising, managing community outreach events, such as their youth aviation summer programs, and preparing members for regional and national collegiate competitions.

“It is such an honor to be chosen captain of the flight team by my peers because it demonstrates to me that they respect my ideas and vision for the team and trust that I will be a responsible and motivating leader,” Perry said. “I promise to work hard every day so that I meet their expectations. I hope to use my position to encourage other female students to get involved in flight team as well as be a good example for young girls in the field of aviation.”

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Purple goes green: Kansas State Polytechnic adds renewable energy to campus

By Kimberly Bird

A new wind turbine and solar panels have been installed at Kansas State University Polytechnic Campus. The additions will help the campus become more energy efficient.

Kansas State University Polytechnic Campus cut the ribbon on a new wind turbine and solar panels on Nov. 8.

The energy-efficient additions to campus are outside of the Student Life Center. The building will see the benefit of the alternative energy production, while the campus now has the first pieces in place for its goal to become more energy efficient and increase its sustainable energy production.

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