Kansas State University


Division of Facilities News

Category: January 2017


By Ryan Swanson, Assoc V.P. Facilities & University Architect

January 2017 has arrived and it is a great time to be working together as a team as we start the spring semester. I hope this New Year brings each of you a renewed sense of purpose and joy in our time both at and away from the workplace.

I always find that the holiday break is a great time to reaffirm, recharge, and reengage with family, friends and interests that we all need and cherish.  Like many of you, my family enjoyed some great food and exchanged gifts representing a sense of selflessness and commitment to a shared hope in the love we have for each other.  I personally broke in a couple of new pieces of woodworking equipment – a new scroll saw and router table.  I also had some amazing time out on the mountain bike discovering country roads and lake trails from a perspective I don’t get every day during the year.  Admittedly, the bike rides are activities that none of the family cares to join me in when it’s below zero.  However, my young kids do really like to assist when we measure, layout, sand, and stain woodworking projects.  I hope that each of you also had extended and intentional time specifically set aside both for yourself and with your families to recharge the batteries.

As the New Year starts, I want to encourage each of you to make an effort to hold close and maintain that sense of connectedness with your family, friends and the wide variety of interests that fill you with energy outside of your workday at K-State.   The increased sense of energy and joy you had over the break can and should be a goal to carry on through each day through purposeful and intentional activities of balance and perspective.

Stepping back on campus in 2017, we have a lot to reflect upon and a lot of which to be proud.   There are truthfully too many events to describe in this article.  Some are planned efforts.  Others are specific responses to unforeseen events, and yet others are shared with folks outside facilities.  All are noteworthy in their own regard.

Planned Efforts:

Earlier this fall, Mid Campus Drive opened as a beautiful pedestrian mall signaling a turning point in the wrap-up of many interwoven campus construction efforts as well as the fruition of much hard work by a truly integrated and collaborative team. These teams included, but were not limited to, Planning and Project Management, Maintenance and Engineering Operations, Custodial, Landscape and Grounds, Accounting, and Purchasing departments within facilities as well as a number of other campus partners outside facilities.  You all should proudly wear the badge of K-State pride with confidence and purpose. Together, we accomplished a lot of great work over the past 3 years.

Emergency Events:

The response our teams had to our first snow event of the year on the weekend after finals was excellent – keep up the great work. Related kudos go out to the highly responsive attention and flood cleanup efforts due to frozen pipes in more than one building on that frigid, below-zero campus night.  The very same Sunday evening and early Monday morning, many of your fellow team members in the Custodial, Power Plant and Maintenance Departments – plus departmental staff, EHS and public safety – were called back to campus to what was a disaster of broken pipes, piles of wet ceiling tile, desks, chairs, computers, and lab equipment.  These two events back to back really flexed our resources, allowing us all to show our true character and commitment to professionalism as a service oriented Facilities department.

Reorganizations for Efficiency:

Huge thank you to the Business Administrative Accounting and HR/Payroll staff formerly located under the Facilities umbrella.  You will always be welcome as part of the Facilities family at K-State.  As many of you know the VPAF team (Facilities, Parking Services, Public Safety, EHS, Audit, Finance, and Budget divisions under VP Cindy Bontrager’s leadership) has worked together collaboratively for much of the past semester to stand up a new shared services department from combined elements in all of our collective divisions – including a number of staff from Facilities.  Under the leadership of Director Mandy Cole, this effort is already seeing financial efficiencies and a new focus on excellence of core services to all of the VP divisions.  The business and accounting team moved from Dykstra to Anderson Hall include Tim, Elke, and Ute – with two open accountant/business office positions formerly assigned to facilities removed for budget savings.  Facilities HR/Payroll team members now reporting to shared services – but still physically located in Dykstra – include Cynthia and Janet plus student worker, Madison Nelson.   A couple of new faces, Annette and Ann, have actually moved over to Dykstra from other VPAF divisions.  Finally, in the near future, Larry McGee’s former position will be filled to lead this new area of HR/Payroll within shared services. Mandy is working in Dykstra on Tuesdays and Thursdays until Larry’s former position is filled so as you see some new faces, please say hello.

In closing, I want to say thank you to everyone in Facilities for the service, leadership and support to the K-State campus.  Let’s all resolve to be purposeful in our work and hold a balanced perspective as we face the challenges and opportunities of the New Year.


Our team would like to express our appreciation to Juan Ceja
for the installation of the electrical boxes and conduit for the new Durland 1041 A/V system. He installed the boxes, conduit and even went as far as to add pull string that allowed our team to easily pull our A/V wires through the conduit and connect the system. His extra effort to make the install go as smoothly as possible is greatly appreciated!

– Kevin Shippy, ITAC



Dear Loleta, 

I wanted to share with you that I had a very great experience with Tim (Goyette), our facilities custodian assigned to Fairchild Hall. Other than an occasional “hello”, Tim and I do not converse much. However, today I had a nice conversation with him.

 Tim indicated that he thought my office in 304 Fairchild looked different. I shared with him that I was going to be working remotely sometime in January and that I had just returned from a 10-day international trip. While I was absent, some work was done in my office and the contents of my desk drawers were put in boxes on the floor.

 Tim told me that the boxes on the floor were next to, and on top of, the recycle bin. Tim used very good judgement in discerning those boxes did not look like they were “recycle” items.

He decided to wait until I returned to the office and he would then ask about their status.

I thanked him several times and complimented him for discerning that, indeed, those boxes were NOT recycle items and that he was very smart to think twice about leaving them alone until he had a chance to ask me if they were recycle or not. I am very grateful to Tim that he used great judgement in knowing NOT to throw the personal contents of my desk drawers in the recycle bin.

 I wanted to make sure that you knew this and passed this along to Tim’s supervisor. I hope that you have a great Christmas holiday.

-Mary K. Pyle, Office of International Programs

Shelly Hauck and her moving crew did an excellent job moving our Apparel Design Equipment. We are very appreciative of the extra prep time and moving time they took to ensure that everything was moved safely. Many Thanks to all!

-Gina Jackson, Apparel Textiles & Interior


Many thanks and Happy Holidays to Hye Suk Stoddard, Custodial Specialist, from her friends in Dole Hall!


Congratulations to Jim Nelson on his retirement from Facilities Specialist in the Construction Shop. Ed Heptig, Director of Building Maintenance, presented Jim with a plaque for his years of service during his retirement reception on December 15TH.  We wish Jim and his family all the best as he takes on this new adventure!


By Jaime Parker, Human Capital Services


The Division of Human Capital Services is accepting nominations for the President’s Award of Excellence for Unclassified Professionals. All winners receive a $1,000 award. The nomination deadline is February 6, 2017.

The President’s Award of Excellence for Unclassified Professionals fosters excellence in the workplace by rewarding and recognizing unclassified professional staff members who achieve excellence and/or make exemplary contributions to the mission and values of K-State. Unclassified professional staff, or non-faculty, with a minimum of three years of continuous service who are employed at five-tenths or greater on a regular or term appointment are eligible.

Four awards are given, one in each of the following categories:

  • Team building, group activity, service to the university
  • Exceptional productivity, creativity or innovation
  • Distinguished accomplishment
  • Leadership

More information about the President’s Award of Excellence for Unclassified Professionals, including the nomination form and procedures, is available online.

Questions may be directed to hrcomp@k-state.edu.


Nominations are open for the K-State University Support Staff Award of Excellence. All winners receive a $1,000 award. The nomination deadline is February 3, 2017.

The K-State University Support Staff Award of Excellence recognizes exemplary performance and contributions of classified support staff members who consistently excel in their positions and demonstrate integrity and a strong commitment to the mission and values of K-State. All classified, benefits eligible staff members, full or part-time, who have received a “meets expectations” or higher rating on their most recent performance review are eligible to be nominated for this award.

Three award winners are selected, one from each of the following categories:

  • Office and Clerical
  • Technical and Professional
  • Service and Maintenance

More information about the K-State University Support Staff Award of Excellence, including the nomination form and procedures, is available online.

Please consider nominating staff for an award. Questions may be directed to hrcomp@k-state.edu.

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