Welcome To The Edge: K-State’s Business-Research-Talent Hub Gets a New Name


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MANHATTAN — Kansas State University and the KSU Foundation announce the Edge Collaboration District at K-State, formerly known as the North Campus Corridor. This rebranding reflects the strategic move beyond a geographical name to encompass a growing community of diversified corporate, technical and research partners. The Edge Collaboration District is where industry, K-State research and the creation of workforce talent come together to produce meaningful innovations and real outcomes for Kansas and beyond, inspired by the university’s land-grant mission.

More than a dozen industry partners and six academic colleges are represented in the Edge Collaboration District, and more are expected. These partnerships and $2 billion of current and planned infrastructure investment in the district will further inspire industry collaboration along the northern edge of campus, which includes the K-State Research Park, K-State Office Park, National Bio and Agro-Defense Facility, Biosecurity Research Institute, the College of Veterinary Medicine, the College of Agriculture’s Grain Science and Industry Complex and more.

“Kansas State University has the expertise, the drive for innovation, and the collaborative relationships with industry and government leaders to create extraordinary benefit to Kansans and the country,” said K-State President Richard Myers. “The motivation behind the Edge Collaboration District reinforces K-State’s resolve to be a leader in research and talent development. Our combined assets and expertise have earned K-State the reputation of the Silicon Valley for global food, health and biodefense.”

With the innovative research environment expanding in Manhattan and around K-State’s campus in anticipation of the National Bio and Agro-Defense Facility’s opening, the district offers both the research edge and the talent edge, where talent, hard work and passion fuel successful teams and build a workforce for tomorrow.

“K-State has long provided a competitive edge with our world-impacting research partnerships and generations of graduates who lead and innovate diverse industries,” said KSU Foundation CEO and President Greg Willems. “The Edge Collaboration District makes clear our intention to become the premier industry-serving research university in the Midwest and support regional, state and national economies by welcoming top-tier partners to make their home here at Kansas State University.”

Approximately 5,000 jobs are expected to be housed in the Edge Collaboration District by 2035.

As Kansas State University’s strategic partner for philanthropy, the KSU Foundation inspires and guides philanthropy toward university priorities to boldly advance the K-State family. To learn more about the Edge Collaboration District at K-State, go to www.k-siteonline.com/edge.

What people are saying
“This new Edge Collaboration District is a smart, strategic investment that will provide unmatched educational opportunities for Kansas State University students now and in the future. My administration will continue to support Kansas higher education and innovative projects like these that will help maintain a steady, educated workforce for businesses and offer opportunities to grow and strengthen our state’s economy.”
— Kansas Gov. Laura Kelly

“Higher education is one of Kansas’ key assets in attracting and maintaining outstanding companies in our state. In Kansas’ new economic development strategy, Framework for Growth, innovation is one of four pillars. The Edge Collaboration District represents the type of investment Kansas needs to make to foster innovation through public-private partnerships. I look forward to seeing the terrific developments that will come from this impressive investment.
— Kansas Secretary of Commerce David Toland

“Kansas State University is helping lead the way through its research, innovation and collaboration with industry partners. The work and research being done at K-State through the Edge Collaboration District will help develop the infrastructure and environment needed to continue growing the Flint Hills Region, especially in the areas of animal and human health, and national security, that will benefit the state and the country.”
— U.S. Sen. Jerry Moran

“The North Campus Corridor has been a focus for the region’s economic development for the past decade. With its rebranding as the Edge Collaboration District, Kansas State University and Manhattan, Kansas, will be able to tell a compelling story that attracts new partnerships and creates new jobs for the region.”
— President/CEO of the Manhattan Area Chamber of Commerce Jason Smith

“Manhattan and K-State are on the cusp of experiencing a period of rapid economic growth and expansion. The Edge Collaboration District will provide reliable and timely access to a growing number of employment centers and job opportunities along the Kimball Avenue corridor. The city of Manhattan is determined to fully enhance this transportation network through expanded roadways and intersections, along with multimodal enhancements to the corridor that will include 10 multi-use paths, public transit and game day bus zones and landscape amenities. The Edge Collaboration District will be an attractive component for prospective companies and workers, all in order to facilitate economic competitiveness and prosperity in the Greater Manhattan region and the state of Kansas.”
— Manhattan Mayor Usha Reddi

“Talent, place, and innovation come together at K-State and are embodied in our land-grant mission to create new knowledge, share that with the world through teaching, and generate inventions that improve people’s lives and livelihoods. The Edge Collaboration District will be a natural home for government, private-sector industry and university researchers to engage in advancing fundamental discoveries that become the solutions that Kansas and the world need for today and tomorrow.”
— Kansas State University Vice President for Research Peter Dorhout

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Derek Nester
Derek Nesterhttps://sunflowerstateradio.com
Derek Nester was born and raised in Blue Rapids and graduated from Valley Heights High School in 2000. He attended Cowley College in Arkansas City and Johnson County Community College in Overland Park studying Journalism & Media Communications. In 2002 Derek joined Taylor Communications, Inc. in Salina, Kansas working in digital media for 550 AM KFRM and 100.9 FM KCLY. Following that stop, he joined Dierking Communications, Inc. stations KNDY AM & FM as a board operator and fill-in sports play-by-play announcer. Starting in 2005 Derek joined the Kansas City Chiefs Radio Network as a Studio Coordinator at 101 The Fox in Kansas City, a role he would serve for 15 years culminating in the Super Bowl LIV Championship game broadcast. In 2021 he moved to Audacy, formerly known as Entercom Communications, Inc. and 106.5 The Wolf and 610 Sports Radio, the new flagship stations of the Kansas City Chiefs Radio Network, the largest radio network in the NFL. Through all of this, Derek continues to serve as the Digital Media Director for Sunflower State Radio, the digital and social media operations of Dierking Communications, Inc. and the 6 radio stations it owns and operates across Kansas.

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