The University of Kansas recently launched a comprehensive $1.2 billion fundraising campaign. Far Above: The Campaign for Kansas strives to advance KU and benefit every corner of the state. That includes students at the Edwards Campus.
Priorities for the Edwards Campus during Far Above include:
- Scholarships – Increase the scholarship base to help more students pursue degrees and stay in school.
- Student Services – Strengthen retention initiatives, including academic support, leadership development opportunities, and assistance to students with the transition back to school.
- Learning Studio/Environments – Enhance library and technology services, improve study and learning environments, and add collaborative space for faculty and students.
- Community Outreach for Public Impact – Bring more of KU to the community, including additional lecture series, arts and music, as well as professional and leadership development programming.
“Of the four initiatives, the scholarship component may be the most pressing need,” says Mary Ryan, associate dean of academic affairs at the Edwards Campus. “Students here are eligible for all the same scholarships as any KU student, but the needs of working adult students are often much different,” she says.
“Most Edwards Campus undergrads begin at a community college and incur a steep tuition increase to advance here,” Ryan adds. “And many of our graduate students are supported by their employers, but the levels have fallen off in the past few years due to the economy.”
Needs will only increase as new degree programs from the Johnson County Education Research Triangle initiative bring as many as 1,000 more students to the campus each year.
“That’s why we feel it’s important to build up the scholarship base for this campus,” Ryan says. “We plan to reach out to Edwards Campus alumni and the donors who have been so supportive in the past. They understand what these students need to advance their careers and the companies that employ them.”