Coming full circle: K-State 360 finds success around campus and beyond


K-State 360 was introduced to Kansas State students during the fall 2017 semester to enhance student involvement beyond the classroom. The homegrown program is a platform created to keep track of students’ co-curricular activities with the eventual goal of standing out to future employers and/or graduate schools.

“K-State 360 helps you make sense of what you’re doing outside of the classroom,” Trent McGee, K-State 360 program coordinator, said.

While the program helps outside of the classroom, K-State 360 originated inside of one. Under the direction of Jan Elsasser, assistant vice president for student life, students and staff from the Division of Student Life began this creation process during the Summer of 2014. Her students took the initiative to create an innovative platform after coming up short while searching for existing programs to expand on.

Elsasser is “extremely proud” of the significant efforts her students put into the design, look and feel of what is today K-State 360.

First introduced at a pancake feed on Aug. 20, 2017, K-State 360 has surpassed the growth rate that was expected.

“We had a goal of one thousand students,” McGee said. “Now we are at 2,761.”

Awareness has been a great ordeal in the upbringing of the program.

“Right now, we are just seeing a lot of students start to recognize what K-State 360 is,” said Kelli Farris, executive director for the Center for Student Involvement. “Once we can share what the program is with the students, then they’re going to start buying into it.”

The Center for Student Involvement has spent a great amount of time talking with students regarding why K-State 360 is beneficial. Since the pancake feed in August, this program tabled over 660 events.

One-third of the participants are first-generation college students. Students who use K-State 360 are diverse, majoring in everything from agriculture to education and spanning over many ethnic groups.

K-State 360 is not only reaching students across the K-State campus, but it is also gaining recognition across the nation. Schools such as the University of Kansas and the University of Connecticut have sparked an interest in this program, and McGee said K-State 360 will be represented at the NASPA Annual Conference held March 3-7.

The next step for K-State 360 is a points system that will be redeemable for various items across campus. This can be compared to Pocket Points. Students will gain points while attending a K-State 360 event and the points will then be claimable on their 360 account. This gamification puts a unique spin on co-curricular activities, and Farris said they hope it will allow for more students to be reached.