On Friday, Sept. 2, students, staff and community members celebrated the inauguration of Kansas State’s 15th president, Richard H. Linton, at McCain Auditorium. Roughly 800 people were in attendance, including Kansas Governor Laura Kelly and former K-State president Richard Myers.
As the inauguration ceremony commenced, symphonic melodies such as Slavonic Dance #8 and Variations on a Shaker Melody (from “Appalachian Spring”) began to play. Soon after, men in billowing and technicolor garments emerged, presenting the university mace onto Goldstein Family Stage.
Before long, Governor Laura Kelly took to the stage, telling jokes and giving words of endearment to President Linton.
“If there is nowhere else like Kansas, then there really is nowhere else like K-State … it is a great day to be a Kansan,” Kelly said.
Carl Ice, vice chair of the Kansas Board of Regents, characterized the objective plan for K-State amid the introduction of a new university president.
“Education and our land grant mission are more important than ever and certainly the obstacles for a higher education are different now than they were then, but Kansas State University is going to beat those challenges and we’re going to grasp opportunities, I believe that is certain,” Ice said.
When President Linton began his speech at the podium, he expressed his gratitude to those at K-State.
“It is an incredible privilege for me to be standing before you today,” Linton said. “It is an honor of a lifetime. I’m grateful for our engaged citizens throughout the state, our dedicated leaders and our very own Manhattan community.”
Boosting student involvement and enrollment at the university is a priority, Linton said.
“The biggest challenge we’re facing is [a lack of] student involvement and enrollment … we’re doing everything we can to turn that around,” Linton said.
The second priority is deferred maintenance, Linton said.
“There is $450 million in deferred maintenance challenges … We’re going to work with the state and other universities to help overcome these challenges,” Linton said.
Linton said he is eager to see all facets of K-State progress in a meaningful and productive direction.