Scholarships Make an Impact

By Grant Guggisberg

Scholarships have always been an important part of recruiting top students to the Carl R. Ice College of Engineering, but with student need at an all-time high and the college prioritizing enrollment growth, they’re more crucial than ever.

Every dollar given for scholarships to K-State engineering makes a difference in the lives of students, but a current challenge facing the college is a lack of flexibility in how current scholarship dollars are able to be allocated. While many existing awards are designed to help certain underrepresented groups or future students in specific locations or regions, most are unable to respond to changing demographics and priorities over time.

“We are extremely fortunate to have the support of many generous alumni affiliated with the college,” said Craig Wanklyn, assistant dean for recruitment. “Flexible scholarships allow us to respond to student needs as they change. As our recruitment strategies continue to evolve, being able to utilize scholarships in the way that best meets those needs is important.”

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An example of the type of program flexible funds can be used for is the college’s “finish line” awards for upperclassmen who are close to graduating but need a small boost to help them through the last semester or two remaining.

“Flexible funds can allow us to be creative and invest in student’s overall success at the beginning and end of their K-State engineering career,” Wanklyn said.

While the college remains committed to undergraduate and graduate student success, recruiting the area’s best and brightest remains an ever-changing challenge. High school students preparing for college are more cost-conscious than ever, looking to avoid debt and see large returns on any investments, including their own education.

With competition from other schools for the highest-achieving students ratcheting up, so too must scholarship offers. Similarly, students with the greatest need also require more scholarships to be able to afford higher education, even paired with state and federal resources.

“Being able to compete within the state of Kansas and regionally for these students is paramount to our success,” said Gary Clark, senior associate dean for the college. “We want to be able to offer the same sort of scholarship support these students might find elsewhere so they can choose their university destination without money being a key decision-making factor.

“We want K-State engineering to remain the No. 1 choice for engineering students in Kansas and an affordable choice to those across the country.”


Are you interested in helping the Carl R. Ice College of Engineering through the gift of a scholarship? Contact the engineering development team at or 785-775-2000.