Kansas State University


Division of Facilities News

Author: Lori Hayden

Good Ole’ Summer Time

By Ed Heptig, Director of Building Maintenance

‘Summer break’ can mean a lot of different things to different people. For many, it is a time for fun and vacations. Elementary students may look forward to time at the swimming pool, ball games and family trips. High School students envision summer jobs, hanging out with friends, and maybe sleeping in. Internships or ‘study abroad programs’ might be on the agenda for college students. However, the Division of Facilities has a different concept of ‘Summer break’. For our team, it is an opportunity to reach areas of campus that are not easily accessible when classes are in session.

Working during the summer months, with fewer classes occurring, allows us to complete campus updates as well as perform routine and preventative maintenance more efficiently and safely than during the school year. The construction crew, led by Don Engelken, will be busy this summer renovating classrooms for the next group of students. This includes needed repairs, new HVAC systems, electrical, plumbing, flooring and painting of classrooms and lecture halls as well as labs, office space and other study and work areas. Our Grounds & Landscape Crew, led by Darrin Dohrmann, will mow, plant flower beds, mulch and remove a number of damaged or diseased trees. There are light poles, walk lights, bike parking pads, and street signs that will be installed across campus during the next few months. These are just a few of the projects to be completed this summer.

While warmer weather means an increase in planned maintenance, the winter months are not a time of inactivity. The Division of Facilities is responsible for the upkeep of 10 miles of roadway, 26 miles of sidewalk as well as the maintenance of more than ninety buildings. Weather conditions add to the challenge. All of our crews must deal with Mother Nature and the fury of the seasons whether it is excessive rain, extreme heat, or an abundance of snow and cold temperatures. This last winter, almost every weekend brought additional snowfall that kept our staff busy. Construction Crew members stayed occupied clearing streets and loading-docks. Grounds & Landscaping Crew were just as busy clearing sidewalks and steps while our Custodial Crew shoveled and swept snow to make sure building entrances were clear. Building Maintenance Zone Crews inspected areas around their assigned buildings and helped Custodial staff in keeping areas accessible for students, employees and campus visitors. In addition to snow, the freeze and thaw cycle caused damage to many of the campus streets. We spent several hours packing patch material into potholes only to see it pop out a few weeks (or even days) later due to temperature changes. We continue to repair potholes daily.

I want to extend a big “Thank You” to our Facilities Team for all the hard work and long hours they put in to get us through a rough winter. Several key people were vital to the process running smoothly. Paul Woodyard was my first phone call. He contacted construction crew members James (Skip) Davis, Kurt Norris, Dan Plummer and John Silva who composed the main staff working nights, early mornings, and weekends. The Day Crew – Larry Booker, Tom Cook, Dan Engelbert and Larry Melton would continue clean-up efforts through-out the day. Mark Fronce and Joe Meyers coordinated the Grounds & Landscape crew to clean 26 miles of sidewalks while Custodial supervisors Patrick Lancaster and Quentin Rawlings directed Custodial crews to clear building entrances. Building Maintenance Zone supervisors Troy Bronaugh, Galen Hageman, Shelly Hauck, Travis Homeier and Mike Paph led their teams in checking building entrances, handicap ramps, and curb cuts to support the Custodial Crew efforts. It was a long winter, but our crews did a great job clearing snow and making it possible to keep the campus open.

Our summer schedule has started! We plan to accomplish a lot over the next few months. Like every year, we will adjust our day-to-day workload as necessary to deal with unexpected events but we plan to have campus in good shape when the weather changes again. Before we know it, we will be welcoming students back to campus for another great school year.

Have a great summer!

Welcome to Our Team!

Tyler Maddox was hired as a Custodial Specialist for Vet Med.

He is working for Thomas O’Briant.

Jared Watson was hired as a Power Plant Operator.

He is working for Tim Brunner.

Just For Fun!

The Kansas Forestry Service provided a saw mill demonstration in the Dykstra parking lot last month. Milled boards from the demonstration will be stored, dried and then used in campus building and design projects. Lumber from ash trees can be used to build tables, wainscoting, architectural ceilings and more!




KUDOS!…to HANNA RUDER (daughter of Shannon Ruder, Storeroom Supply Specialist) for being selected to receive the Agricultural & Applied Economics Association’s Outstanding Master’s Thesis Award from the AAEA (Agricultural & Applied Economics Association). Hanna will be recognized at the AAEA Awards & Fellows Recognition Ceremony in Atlanta, GA on July 22nd.


The wind blows in Kansas.

If you grew up in Western Kansas, you probably know that better than most. There is substantial data to confirm that statement, and state leaders are making the most of it.  Over the last several years, you may have seen massive wind turbines transported on trucks or installed all over the state. Wind energy is a clean fuel source. It doesn’t pollute the air like power sources that rely on the combustion of fossil fuels like coal or gas.

According to the National Renewable Energy Laboratory, Kansas has the second highest potential capacity for wind power behind Texas.  Sitting squarely in the center of America’s wind tunnel (see purple area on map), Kansas has led the nation over the past decade in all measured categories of scaling up renewable electricity generation.

So why doesn’t K-State take advantage of this abundant commodity? The short answer is that the cost of instituting the change combined with other competing institutional needs would make that a challenge. K-State could feasibly install utility scale wind turbines to generate approximately half of the Campus’ power needs, but electricity is needed even on calm days when the wind isn’t blowing. In addition, the estimated cost for installation would be in the range of $25 million along with maintenance and operation expenses that would average around $75 thousand per year.

While installing our own turbines isn’t feasible at this time, another option would provide access to competitively priced renewable energy through a new program offered by Westar Energy. Under this program, known as the Renewables Direct Program, K-State’s main campus will receive approximately 50 percent of its current electrical load at a fixed price for 20 years. The energy will be provided by a new 300-megawatt wind farm being built in northern Kansas and is scheduled to be on line in 2020. K-State is one of 14 Kansas organizations that will receive electricity from the wind farm. The anticipated savings for utilizing this program will be approximately $180,000 to $200,000 annually.

K-State has worked aggressively to lower its energy usage over the past several years and the work has paid off. KSU has seen a net decrease of both energy usage and expense during simultaneous growth in building space. The Renewables Direct program is just one example of how that has been accomplished.



Welcome to Our Team!

Ronald Banks was hired as a Custodial Specialist.

He is working for Steve Greinke.

Patrick O’Neill was hired as a Landscape Tech I.

He is working for Mark Fronce.

Jessica Ott was hired as a Project Manager.

She is working for Diana Hutchison.

Lawrence Davis was hired as a Custodial Specialist.

He is working for Quentin Rawlins.

Janan Walker was hired as a Custodial Specialist.

She is working for Mary Grubbs.

Rosanna Carvalho was hired as an Arch Eng Project Manager.

She is working for Diana Hutchison.

Raymond Fahrny was hired as a Maintenance & Repair Tech.

He is working for Mike Paph.

Shannon Ruder was hired as a Supply Specialist.

She is working for Carla Bishop.

Beverly Saunders was hired as a Custodial Specialist.

She is working for Mary Grubbs.

Aaron Burger was hired as a Custodial Specialist.

He is working for Quentin Rawlins.

Christine Blau was hired as a Custodial Specialist.

She is working for Steve Greinke.

Angel Brown was hired as a Custodial Specialist.

She is working for Steve Greinke.

Adam Miller was hired as a Custodial Specialist.

He is working for Beverly Price.

Faith Bliss was hired as a Custodial Specialist.

She is working for Thomas O’Briant.

Linda Craghead was hired as Director of Custodial Services.

She is working for Casey Lauer.

Terry Sprecker was hired as Landscape Tech I.

He is working for Mark Fronce.

Durga Prasad Sarilla was hired as a Systems Analyst.

He is working for Gary Weishaar.

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