At top: The revitalization and expansion of Seaton Complex will reinvigorate K-State’s campus core and provide new opportunities for students in the College of Architecture, Planning & Design. Above: Opening this fall, Phase IV is a 108,000-square-foot expansion to the College of Engineering’s Durland-Rathbone-Fiedler complex.
The Sunderland Foundation supports university
By Hayli Morrison
The Sunderland Foundation, of Overland Park, Kansas, supports infrastructure projects in industries like higher education, healthcare and the arts, to name a few. Now, the foundation has turned its attention to Kansas State University by supporting two projects currently underway.
Their gift will create the Sunderland Foundation Fabrication Yard within the College of Architecture, Planning & Design’s Seaton Complex revitalization and expansion. It will also create the Sunderland Foundation Electrical and Computer Engineering Reception Area in the College of Engineering’s Phase IV expansion.
“These are certainly two projects that are of high importance to the university,” said Kent Sunderland, president of the foundation and vice chairman of Ash Grove Cement Company.
The facilities projects will create a more collaborative, open dynamic within the colleges, conducive to teamwork and project-based learning.
“Communication and team-building are important to our organization,” Sunderland said. “Having people who are trained in those areas are important to us.”
An equally important priority for the Sunderland Foundation is strengthening education in the fields of science, technology, engineering and math (STEM), which has been a cornerstone of its longtime philanthropic support for K-State.
“We hire a lot of engineers and we have an interest in seeing STEM education increase,” Sunderland said. “We have a great respect for what K-State is doing in training students.”