Kansas State University


K-State Parents and Family Association

Category: Issue 51, February 2017

President Myers writes about sportsmanship


As the first year of my presidency unfolds, I continue to be even more impressed by the wonderful accomplishments of our students, faculty and staff. I hear daily about a student’s accomplishment or a faculty member’s significant research. What a pleasant surprise to discover our university is even better than I knew. This is why I decided to compete to become your president.

One surprise that has not been pleasant is hearing a vulgar chant at sporting events targeted at our in-state rival. It’s easy to see how one can get caught up in the moment. However, many of my friends across the nation reached out to me following last week’s men’s basketball game and expressed their dismay. The chant was clearly heard from coast to coast on national television. It was personally embarrassing and not what one expects from a world-class university.

The strength of the Wildcat family lies in passing our legacy from one generation to the next. K-Staters are known for doing the right thing. Whether our fans are 8, 18 or 80, they deserve the best fan experience in the Big 12. I think about those younger fans sitting in the stands or watching on television and know they represent our next generation. As we continue the spring competition season, let’s show them the Wildcat Way.


Meet Director of Recreational Services: Steve Martini

Steve Martini
Director of the Chester E. Peters Recreation Complex, Steve Martini

K-State Parents and Family Association (PFA) Intern Annie Jewell ’18 met with Steve Martini, Director of the Chester E. Peters Student Recreation Center to learn about the services and programs the rec has to offer to students, faculty and alumni. She also wanted to learn more about their role and the vision for overall student wellness.

Annie: Thanks for your time today, Steve. Tell me more about the history of the Chester E. Peters Recreation Complex and your leadership since starting at K-State.

Steve: Well, I’ve been here since 1980, and it’s kinda become my way of life. When I got here, the original building was just being finished. Prior to the current location, we were located in Ahearn Fieldhouse with only two professionals working for the rec. The students then primarily utilized intramurals as a source of exercise before the cultural switch to individualized sports. Now students can watch a TV show or read a book while working out which wasn’t too common back then. K-State Athletics had control of the courts during basketball season until late in the evening, meaning intramural basketball teams would be playing until 2 AM! As a result, students passed a referendum to pay for more space and equipment. That building was opened in the fall of 1980.

Annie: Since 1980, how much has the recreation complex grown?

Steve: The first building was about a third of the size it is now. Since then, exercise has become more popular. Not in the sense that its a fad, but people are more aware of their bodies and how to take care of them. The latest renovation, with another student referendum, was opened in 2012 at 265,000 square feet. We were able to add more cardio area, more equipment, more space for fitness classes and personal training.

Continue reading “Meet Director of Recreational Services: Steve Martini”

Fraternity and Sorority Recognized for Excellence

The K-State Panhellenic and Interfraternity communities had an incredible 2016, which was recognized at the Association of Fraternal Leadership and Values Conference February 2-5 in Indianapolis.

The 2016 Panhellenic Council was recognized for Excellence in Membership Recruitment, Philanthropy & Community Service, as Risk Reduction & Management.

Members of K-State’s Panhellenic and Interfraternity Executive Council pose for a picture at the AFLV Conference in Indianapolis, IN.

Fraternity and sorority life continues to grow. In August, 649 women joined the Panhellenic community and 450 men joined IFC fraternities. The total population on the final grade roster is 3,900. That is up 542 members since spring 2014.

Scholastic achievement continues to be the leading priority of the 3,900 women and men involved with one of the 25 IFC fraternities and 13 Panhellenic sororities. For the past 51 consecutive semesters, the all fraternity and sorority average was higher than the all undergraduate average. In December, 190 fraternity and sorority members graduated.

The 1,654 men in the fraternity community earned a 3.134 gpa. A total of 216 men achieved a 4.0 this past fall. It also has 229 first generation students. There are 475 men in the college of engineering or 28.7%. With 468 men in the college of business, 28.3% study in that field.

The 2,246 Panhellenic women earned a 3.352 gpa. With 30.8% of women studying in a major with in the college of arts and sciences, it has the largest concentration of sorority women. Architecture has 52 women, or 2.3%.

More than 24 percent of the PHC membership earned a 4.0 in fall 2016…that’s 540 women with 4.0s this fall. A total of 757 members earned a 4.0. Of that number 317 have a cumulative 4.0 gpa.

Besides succeeding academically, the 13 Panhellenic chapters alone raised more than $96,000 last spring alone. The 25 IFC fraternities donated more than 26,000 hours of community service this past year.

Continue reading “Fraternity and Sorority Recognized for Excellence”

Students Plan Mental Wellness Week

Student Body President Jessica Van Ranken is a senior from Lindsborg, KS majoring in Political Science. Vice-President Trenton Kennedy hails from Frankfort, KS and is majoring in entrepreneurship.

While running for Student Body President/Vice President last spring, Jessica Van Ranken and Trenton Kennedy shared a campaign priority to increase awareness for mental wellness among the student body. K-State junior Olivia Baalman was listening to their message, and was inspired to apply for Student Governing Association’s (SGA) Health and Safety Director.

According to the SGA website, the Health and Safety Director is responsible for campus programming designed to increase the safety of students, both on and off campus. The position represents the interests and concerns of students on matters pertaining to health and safety, and will work with campus officials, local businesses and community partners to accomplish a safer campus and community environment. This position is specifically charged with executing key elements of the Van Ranken-Kennedy administration’s focus and initiatives related to mental wellness on K-State’s campus.

Olivia Baalman is a junior majoring in Computer Science from Wichita, KS.

Baalman was selected as health and safety director, and quickly went to work creating plans for a first-ever Mental Wellness Week.  Olivia shared that her personal knowledge and experiences are a motivating factor for creating programs and events that de-stigmatize myths centered around mental illness.

Olivia assembled a committee of students, faculty and staff to prepare a schedule of activities that includes opportunities for students to have fun while learning about mental wellness. Committee representatives include WellCat Ambassadors, Union Program Council, Counseling Services and Student Governing Association. Continue reading “Students Plan Mental Wellness Week”

Academic Coaching: The Purpose Project

The Academic Coaching program offered under the Division of Student Life, is a free resource made available to any student at any level of any degree. Students will be assigned a professional academic coach, made available to meet one on one without a limit on duration.  The notes below are thoughts from the Director of Academic Coaching, Scott Voos.

The Purpose Project

What do you want to do? Said clearly and succinct. I normally leave that statement open ended without direction to see where a student wants to go with it. I don’t mind waiting a few seconds for a student to squirm a bit. When they squirm it usually means that they know I mean business and this isn’t going to be that typical elevator chat about the weather. I have found that a lot of students simply don’t know what they want to do. A lot of students will go their entire college career without really paying mind to this simple question. That usually leads to some anxiety near graduation day and a fear of what’s next. Of course this is what college is meant for, but somewhere along the line this question is being delayed longer and longer.

Continue reading “Academic Coaching: The Purpose Project”