News Items In Category XCampus News

Masten honored for service, impact at KU

Posted on Oct 18, 2017 in Alumni News

Randy Masten family at Sporting KC match
Randy Masten, assistant director of KU’s Office of Graduate Military Programs and retired Lieutenant Colonel, was honored for his service at a Sporting KC match on October 15. Masten’s career includes 22 years with the US Army, after which he returned to KU. He works with the Department of Defense to develop academic programs for military service members.

After arranging recognitions for nearly all military and veteran honorees at Sporting KC matches throughout the season, including KU alumnus Warren Corman, it was only appropriate for Colonel Masten, g’03, himself to be honored at the last game.

“The recognition itself was humbling and somewhat surreal to see my family on the big screens at SKC,” said Masten. “It was great to have my wife, Kathi, recognized as well for her service to our country as a military spouse. When I deployed, she took care of our home and the families of my soldiers. It is a very important and demanding volunteer job that often goes over looked. The recognition also gave us an opportunity to discuss our lives in the Army with our son, Kanak. I only served for three years after he joined our family, so he has limited memories of my military service.”

Masten also serves as secretary of the KU Veteran’s Alumni Network.

Watch the video that Sporting KC showed at the game below:

 

KU Cares Month of ServiceThe first KU Cares Month of Service initiative will take place throughout the month of November. A portion of all KU Alumni Association dues will be donated to the Wounded Warrior Scholarship Fund. Join, renew, or upgrade your membership to participate in this initiative! Jayhawks everywhere can also organize service projects and recruit volunteers to serve meals, help with yard work, build homes and more to help improve their communities.

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Another strong class of Jayhawks

Posted on Oct 16, 2017 in Campus News

Strong Hall

The following messages was sent to University of Kansas faculty, staff, and affiliates on Monday, Oct. 16.

Dear Colleagues,

Last month, we were delighted to announce that enrollment at the University of Kansas has grown for the fourth straight year to its highest level since 2011. Additionally, this year’s freshmen have the highest average high school GPA and are the most diverse of any class in KU history. Retention and graduation rates are also higher than ever.

This is terrific news and a clear indication that we are progressing on key institutional goals. Moreover, this progress is the result of strategic choices we’ve made and the efforts of faculty and staff like you. So today, I want to thank you for your part in bringing talented Jayhawks to KU and helping them succeed here. In addition to providing these students a life-changing opportunity, your efforts elevate the university as a whole.

It’s worth reflecting on the improvements we’ve made in how we identify and attract new Jayhawks. In recent years, this has included new renewable scholarships, new admissions standards and an evolution in our recruitment focus from a regional model to a national/international model.

Of course, we can only recruit new students if we have an outstanding product to offer — and because of you, we do! We have nationally ranked academic programs and transformative opportunities across our departments. We have beautiful and well-run campuses. And we have talented marketing practitioners who present KU in a smart and friendly way.

This year’s record-setting retention and graduation rates speak to the ways you support students once they arrive here. This support happens in the classroom when instructors go the extra mile for their students. It includes programs that help Jayhawks in times of crisis. And it includes the work being done to improve the student experience by redesigning courses, using predictive analytics, strengthening academic advising and streamlining processes.

I also want to highlight the vital role of private giving in recruiting and retaining top scholars, as well as our incredible alumni, who are the best Jayhawk ambassadors you can find anywhere.

The truth is, each of you plays a crucial role in recruiting new Jayhawks and ensuring they earn their degree. Again, thank you for the work you do.

If you know any prospective students who want to become Jayhawks, encourage them to apply by November 1 to be eligible for scholarships.

Respectfully,

Doug

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Jayhawks, help welcome prospective students during Crimson & Blue Day

Posted on Oct 12, 2017 in Campus News

Kansas sign in Allen Fieldhouse | Jayhawks, help welcome prospective students at Crimson & Blue Day

Sarah Heitmeyer, vice president of legacy recruitment for the Student Alumni Network, sent the following message to all Student Alumni Network members about Crimson & Blue Day. The event for prospective students and their family members will be held Friday, Oct. 13.

Dear Jayhawks,

As we prepare for our fall break on Friday, something big is happening on campus. This Friday is Crimson & Blue Day, which is our chance to show prospective students all the incredible things the University of Kansas has to offer. I want to echo Provost Neeli’s statements about the opportunity to host prospective Jayhawks and their families from across the state, nation, and world.

On Friday, a thousand prospective students will be on the Hill with their family members, and I am sure we’ll see them exploring campus as we go to our classes. We were all prospective students once. Whether you toured many universities or only a few, you remember the overwhelming feeling of making a college decision. Let’s make this decision easy for these prospective students by showing them our caring and compassionate Jayhawk community.

I hope that you will join me in being a welcoming face for these future Jayhawks on Friday. Stop and take a moment to talk with students and their families as you walk around campus. Share with them your KU story and the opportunities and experiences you’ve had here as a student. Ask them if they have questions about campus and KU. They may need help navigating campus or may want to hear about some of your favorite things about KU or Lawrence.

If you are especially interested in connecting with prospective Jayhawks, join me at the Adams Alumni Center from 9-11 a.m. to mingle with students and families. We’ll have breakfast burritos from Salty Iguana as well as Hot Box Cookies available. This will be a great opportunity to share your KU experiences with these future students.

Sarah Heitmeyer, vice president of legacy recruitment, Student Alumni Leadership BoardPlease join me in welcoming future Jayhawks and their families to campus on Friday. I know together we can show them the best of KU!

Rock Chalk,

Sarah Heitmeyer
VP of Legacy Recruitment
Student Alumni Leadership Board
Class of 2019

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University of Kansas announces Ex.C.E.L. Award winners, concludes 105th Homecoming celebration

Posted on Oct 9, 2017 in Campus News

KU Homecoming Parade 2017 and award winners | Photo courtesy of Steve Puppe

Ex.C.E.L. Award recipients named

Two University of Kansas students, Sana Cheema of Hays and Zoya Khan of Overland Park, are winners of the 27th-annual Excellence in Community, Education and Leadership (Ex.C.E.L.) Awards. The award presentation during halftime of the KU-Texas Tech football game Oct. 7 in Memorial Stadium concluded KU’s 105th Homecoming celebration.

Cheema, a senior who is majoring in biology, is vice president of the Pre-Medical Society and founder and president of KU Friends of Pakistan. She is a University Honors Scholar and serves as the historian for Mortar Board honor society. She is a member of Student Senate and vice president of membership for the Student Alumni Leadership Board.

Khan, a senior who is majoring in political science and global and international studies with a minor in Middle Eastern studies, has served as president of the Muslim Student Association. She chaired the Student Senate Multicultural Affairs Committee, and she has been a member of KU Students for Refugees, the Dole Institute Student Advisory Board and International Student Services.

The Ex.C.E.L. Award provides an annual $250 scholarship to two students. The winners will present at the Blueprints Leadership Conference next spring in conjunction with KU’s Student Involvement and Leadership Center.

Community service activities

The theme for this year’s Homecoming was “Jayhawks of the Galaxy.” Students and alumni participated in several activities throughout the week, including competitions, community service opportunities and reunions. Members of the KU and Lawrence communities collected more than 3,300 cans of non-perishable food for Just Food of Douglas County during the CANstellation competition. They also donated more than 1,500 office supplies for Community Village Lawrence, which was sponsored by the Homecoming steering committee and the United Way of Douglas County.

The annual event was organized by the KU Alumni Association and a student-led Homecoming steering committee, which was directed by Nellie Kassebaum, a Burdick junior in the College of Liberal Arts & Sciences. She worked with Alumni Association adviser Jacey Krehbiel, assistant director of membership and business development. Homecoming sponsors were Crown Toyota Volkswagen, PepsiCo and Kansas Athletics.

Homecoming parade

The Homecoming parade was Friday, Oct. 6, on Massachusetts Street in downtown Lawrence and featured retired NASA astronauts and KU alumni Joe Engle and Steven Hawley as grand marshals. A meet and greet with Kansas Athletics preceded the parade from 4 to 5 p.m. at South Park.

Other 2017 Homecoming event and award winners:

Jennifer Alderdice Homecoming Award

Anna Perrone, a junior from Modesto, California, majoring in strategic communications and business

Rich and Judy Billings Spirit of 1912 Award

Larry Stoppel, 1973 College of Liberal Arts & Sciences alumnus, and his wife, Nancy Tade Stoppel, a 1973 School of Education alumna, from Washington, Kansas

Overall Winners
Greek Life
1st place: Alpha Delta Pi and Triangle
2nd place: Sigma Delta Tau, Delta Delta Delta, Alpha Tau Omega, Beta Sigma Psi
3rd place: Delta Gamma, Delta Tau Delta, Pi Kapa Phi, Alpha Kappa Lambda

Student Life
1st place: Engineering Student Council
2nd place: Beta Upsilon Chi
3rd place: Sellards Scholarship Hall

For more information and a complete list of competition winners, visit homecoming.ku.edu.

Chalk 'n' Rock | Homecoming 2017KU’s 105th Homecoming celebration, Jayhawks of the Galaxy, took place Oct. 1-7, 2017. For a full list of activities and events during Homecoming week, fun facts and historical information, visit the Homecoming website. Share your photos with us by posting on Facebook, Twitter or Instagram using the hashtag #kuhomecoming, and follow the hashtag to see more pictures of the celebration. Homecoming is sponsored by Crown Toyota Volkswagen.

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Students showcase Homecoming spirit at Jayhawk Jingles and Homecoming Food Fest

Posted on Oct 6, 2017 in Campus News

Jayhawk Jingles performance 2017

Bad weather didn’t stop a good time as Jayhawk Jingles took on an intergalactic feel for the annual Homecoming celebration.

Five sorority-fraternity teams packed the Adams Alumni Center Thursday, October 5th to perform their songs and dances with a Jayhawk theme. Hits such as “Starships,” “Hooked on a Feeling,” and “Bohemian Rhapsody” were performed with KU-centric lyrics, and costumes and props included green alien shirts and a cardboard spaceship.

Homecoming Food Fest was a hit as well, as performers and spectators alike enjoyed dinner thanks to the sponsors of the Student Alumni Network Restaurant Partner Program.

This year’s Jayhawk Jingles winners:

1st: Sigma Delta Tau, Delta Delta Delta, Alpha Tau Omega, Beta Sigma Psi
2nd: Kappa Delta, Alpha Epsilon Pi, Alpha Sigma Psi
3rd: Alpha Chi Omega, Kappa Sigma, Zeta Beta Tau

Watch our video or photo slideshow below, or click here to view the photos on Flickr. Photos may be downloaded for personal use.

 
Homecoming 2017 Jayhawk Jingles

Chalk 'n' Rock | Homecoming 2017KU’s 105th Homecoming celebration, Jayhawks of the Galaxy, takes place Oct. 1-7, 2017. For a full list of activities and events during Homecoming week, fun facts and historical information, visit the Homecoming website. Share your photos on social using the hashtag #kuhomecoming, and follow the hashtag to see more pictures of the celebration. Homecoming is sponsored by Crown Toyota Volkswagen.

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NIH backs Slusky research with prestigious New Innovator Award

Posted on Oct 5, 2017 in Campus News

NIH backs Slusky research with prestigious New Innovator Award | Kansas Alumni magazineJoanna Slusky, a KU assistant professor of computational biology and molecular biosciences who won a Moore Inventor Fellowship for her work designing a protein that could help stem antibiotic resistance, was named today as the recipient of a $2.3 million New Innovator Award from the National Institutes of Health (NIH).

Slusky’s work in protein design, the subject of a cover story in the current issue of Kansas Alumni, led to her involvement in the University’s successful 2016 bid to land an $11 million, five-year NIH grant that established the KU Center of Biomedical Research Excellence (COBRE): Chemical Biology of Infectious Disease. Asked to contribute research on antibiotic resistance, Slusky turned to a protein she’d invented—dubbed S1245—and stored in a freezer in her lab. After initial tests proved encouraging, she expanded the research to focus on E. coli bacteria with funding from the $825,000 Moore Fellowship.

The New Innovator Award, part of the NIH’s High-Risk, High-Reward Research program, supports exceptionally creative early career investigators who propose innovative, high-impact projects. Slusky says the grant will allow her to expand her focus from E. coli to other bacterial infections which have similar methods of antibiotic resistance.

“The Moore project is really focused on, ‘Let’s make something,’” Slusky says. “The way that this New Innovator Award is structured, it gives me the ability to really explore the science that’s causing this to happen, so that we can use it potentially for other things as well. The science behind this kind of protein-protein interaction should be useful for other inventions that would be against antibiotic resistance, specifically other inventions that might be useful for other types of bacteria, for other types of antibiotic resistance that we could expand into.”

The increasing resistance of harmful bacteria to antibiotic drugs is a growing problem worldwide. According to the Centers for Disease Control, 2 million people in the United States become infected with antibiotic-resistant bacteria each year, and 23,000 die from these infections. Worldwide, the death toll from drug resistance in illnesses such as bacterial infections, malaria, HIV/AIDS or tuberculosis is 700,000. A 2014 British study projected that by 2050 10 million people will die each year because of increasing resistance to antibiotics and other antimicrobial drugs, surpassing the death rate from cancer.

The scientists behind that study also compiled a list of the 10 most dangerous antibiotic-resistant bacteria, and Slusky has theorized that six of the 10 should be susceptible to a protein like S1245. “So far, with the Moore work, we’ve only been playing with one of the six,” Slusky says. “Now we can say, let’s try to generalize this so that we could see if we can impact six of ten.”

—Steven Hill

Can a professor’s invention turn the battle against antibiotic-resistant bacteria? Read “The Protein in the Freezer,” a feature story on Joanna Slusky’s research from Kansas Alumni magazine, issue no. 5, 2017.

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Chalk ‘n’ Rock makes Wescoe shine

Posted on Oct 3, 2017 in Campus News

Chalk 'n' Rock Homecoming event

Wescoe beach was lit up with color on Tuesday, October 3rd for Chalk ‘n’ Rock, a Homecoming tradition where Greek life and other student organizations cover the sidewalk in chalk drawings celebrating this year’s Homecoming theme, Jayhawks of the Galaxy.

The competition had 11 entries, with the team of Alpha Chi Omega, Kappa Sigma, and Zeta Beta Tau placing first in the greek life category and the Engineering Student Council finishing first in student organizations.

A panel of judges selected this year’s winners:

Greek Life
1st: Alpha Chi Omega, Kappa Sigma, Zeta Beta Tau
2nd: Alpha Delta Pi, Triangle
3rd: Sigma Delta Tau, Delta Delta Delta, Alpha Tau Omega, Beta Sigma Psi

Student Organizations:
1st: Engineering Student Council
2nd: Beta Upsilon Chi
3rd: Sellards Scholarship Hall

Watch our video recap and slideshow of photos from Chalk ‘n’ Rock below, or click here to view the pictures on Flickr. Photos may be downloaded for personal use.

 
HOMC_Chalk_n_Rock_1032017_24335

-Ryan Camenzind

Chalk 'n' Rock | Homecoming 2017KU’s 105th Homecoming celebration, Jayhawks of the Galaxy, takes place Oct. 1-7, 2017. For a full list of activities and events during Homecoming week, fun facts and historical information, visit the Homecoming website. Share your photos with us by posting on Facebook, Twitter or Instagram using the hashtag #kuhomecoming, and follow the hashtag to see more pictures of the celebration. Homecoming is sponsored by Crown Toyota Volkswagen.

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Homecoming signs decorate Watson Library lawn

Posted on Oct 2, 2017 in Campus News

Homecoming signs | KU Alumni Association

Homecoming week begins

The university’s 105th Homecoming celebration kicked off Sunday with Glow KU. The campus and community event is designed to light up Lawrence with crimson and blue spirit.

A panel of judges drove around town to cast their votes for the winning displays. Check out the photos here. Organizations will display their lights all week.

Greek Life
First place: Sigma Delta Tau, Delta Delta Delta, Alpha Tau Omega, Beta Sigma Psi
Second place: Alpha Delta Pi, Triangle
Third place: Delta Gamma, Delta Tau Delta, Pi Kappa Phi, Alpha Kappa Lambda

Student Organization
First place: Engineering Student Council
Second Place: Beta Upsilon Chi

Homecoming signs, competition winner | KU Alumni AssociationHomecoming signs

The sign competition, a perennial favorite, took place on the Watson Library lawn with eight entries. Judges graded the signs on criteria including originality, use of school colors, adherence to the Homecoming theme and overall appearance.

Greek Life
First place: Alpha Delta Pi, Triangle
Second place: Alpha Chi Omega, Kappa Sigma, Zeta Beta Tau
Third place: Delta Gamma, Delta Tau Delta, Pi Kappa Phi, Alpha Kappa Lambda

Student Organizations
First place: Beta Upsilon Chi

You can see photos of all eight entries on our Flickr account.

Check back tomorrow for pictures of Chalk ‘n’ Rock, another favorite tradition! A list of all Homecoming event winners is  online.

 
Chalk 'n' Rock | Homecoming 2017KU’s 105th Homecoming celebration, Jayhawks of the Galaxy, takes place Oct. 1-7, 2017. For a full list of activities and events during Homecoming week, fun facts and historical information, visit the Homecoming website. Share your photos with us by posting on Facebook, Twitter or Instagram using the hashtag #kuhomecoming, and follow the hashtag to see more pictures of the celebration. Homecoming is sponsored by Crown Toyota Volkswagen.

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Ten KU students named finalists for 27th-annual Ex.C.E.L. Awards

Posted on Sep 29, 2017 in Alumni News

Homecoming 2017 Jayhawks of the Galaxy, Ex.C.E.L. Awards

Ten finalists have been selected for the 27th-annual Excellence in Community, Education and Leadership Awards at the University of Kansas. The finalists will participate in the Homecoming parade at 6 p.m. Friday, Oct. 6, along Massachusetts Street in downtown Lawrence. Two winners will be announced during halftime of the KU-Texas Tech Homecoming football game Oct. 7 at Memorial Stadium.

The Ex.C.E.L. Award provides an annual $250 scholarship to two students. The winners will present at the Blueprints Leadership Conference next spring in conjunction with KU’s Student Involvement and Leadership Center. Nominees were selected on the basis of leadership, effective communication skills, involvement at KU and in the Lawrence community, academic scholarship and ability to work with a variety of students and organizations. The selection committee included representatives from Student Union Activities, the Board of Class Officers, the Student Involvement and Leadership Center and the Homecoming Steering Committee.

The award was first given in 1991 to recognize two students for achievement. Names of winners are listed on a plaque on the fifth level of the Kansas Union. To be eligible, applicants must be full-time undergraduate students with an overall grade-point average of 3.0 or higher. Each finalist completed an application and participated in an interview. The finalists and their academic majors are listed below, along with highlights of their campus achievements.

CRAWFORD COUNTY

From Pittsburg
Katie Phalen, molecular, cellular and developmental biology, is executive director of the KU Center for Community Outreach. She is a member of Kappa Delta sorority and Mortar Board honor society. She serves on the KU Memorial Corporation board of directors and is a member and co-founder of KU Interfaith Alliance.

DOUGLAS COUNTY

From Lawrence
Kakra Boye-Doe, psychology with minor in sociology and pre-medicine, is a member of Delta Tau Delta fraternity, where he serves as external vice president. He is co-president of the Minority Association of Pre-Medical Students and a member of Phi Delta Epsilon and Order of Omega. He is a Peer Led Undergraduate Supplements (PLUS) leader and a teaching assistant in biology, and he conducts research in social psychology. He volunteers for Habitat for Humanity.

Puja Shah, microbiology with a minor in Spanish, founded KU Habitat for Humanity and led the organization as president. She served on the executive boards of Jayhawk Health Initiative and the South Asian Student Association, and she chairs the Counseling and Psychological Services Committee. She has conducted research with KU Work Group for Community Health and Development, and she has been a resident assistant at Ellsworth Hall for three years. In 2015, she received the Millard Fuller Young Philanthropist of the Year Award.

ELLIS COUNTY

From Hays
Sana Cheema, biology, is vice president of the Pre-Medical Society and founder and president of KU Friends of Pakistan. She is a University Honors Scholar and serves as the historian for Mortar Board honor society. She is a member of Student Senate and vice president of membership for the Student Alumni Leadership Board.

JOHNSON COUNTY

From Leawood
Danielle London, peace and conflict studies/global and international studies with minors in French and Spanish, has served on the executive board of Students United for Reproductive and Gender Equity as treasurer, outreach coordinator and program director. She is an orientation assistant and peer mentor for the Office of First-Year Experience, and she serves as a student social justice educator for the Office of Multicultural Affairs. She was named a Global Scholar in 2016.

From Overland Park
Zoya Khan, political science and global and international studies with a minor in Middle Eastern studies. She has served as president of the Muslim Student Association, and she chaired the Student Senate Multicultural Affairs Committee. She has been a member of KU Students for Refugees, the Dole Institute Student Advisory Board and International Student Services.

SEDGWICK COUNTY

From Derby
Justin Kim, anthropology and visual art, is president of KU Young Democrats and the Student Alumni Leadership Board. He has been a board member of Student Union Activities and the Dole Student Advisory Board. He also created the Kansas Union Gallery Internship Program.

SHAWNEE COUNTY

From Topeka
Hannah Schifman, art history and psychology with a minor in leadership studies, is a founding member and vice president of the KU Art History Club and a representative for the Board of Class Officers. She is a Kansas Women’s Leadership Institute alumna and a LeaderShape graduate. She has been a student facilitator for the Colors of KU diversity retreat and a leader during Hawk Week. She interned at KU Hillel and participated in Israel Leadership Mission and Alternative Breaks. She is a member of Student Union Activities and she volunteers at Watkins Museum of History.

WASHINGTON

From Seattle
Tomas Green, chemical engineering with a minor in public policy, has been a member of Student Senate and the Dole Institute Student Advisory Board, and he has organized events for TEDxKU. He has volunteered at the Willow Domestic Violence Center and has worked with the Citizens Climate Lobby. He is a Self Engineering Leadership Fellow and a 2016 KU Man of Merit. In 2017, he was selected as a Udall Scholar and a Tau Beta Pi Scholar.

PERU

From Lima
Sebastian Huayamares, chemical engineering and mathematics, is a member of Theta Tau fraternity and the American Institute of Chemical Engineers. He also participates in the University Honors Program and Tau Beta Pi honor society.

A complete schedule of Homecoming week activities can be found online. The Alumni Association and its Student Alumni Network oversee Homecoming 2017, which is sponsored by Crown Toyota Volkswagen and supported by Kansas Athletics, PepsiCo and Student Union Activities.

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Meet the Staff: Keon Stowers

Posted on Sep 28, 2017 in Campus News

Keon Stowers, assistant director of student programs, KU Alumni AssociationKeon Stowers, c’15, assists with student programs for the KU Alumni Association, including advising the Student Alumni Leadership Board. Previously, he represented the KU Office of Admissions helping to recruit first generation and underrepresented students to campus. Keon served as a two-time team captain for KU Football and was featured on Big 12’s Champions for Life series. When Keon isn’t spending time with his beautiful family, he can be found manning the BBQ pit.

I became a Jayhawk because…

When I first got a call from KU I actually had to look on the United States map to find where Kansas was. But after visiting KU for my official recruitment visit, I fell in love with the people. Most importantly, I fell in love with this school and everything the Jayhawk stands for. Now I get the honor of raising two little Jayhawks!

How has KU propelled you into your current career?

After graduating and moving home for a year I returned to KU seeking job opportunities, and that’s where I found an opportunity to work in our Office of Admissions as a recruiter. During my time there I learned so much more about the university and what we have to offer here. I truly believe that my past experience working in the office of admissions has given me great insight on my new role here as Assistant Director of Student Programs.

What’s your favorite spot on campus?

Having lunch at the Market in the Union. It gives the perfect view of Memorial Stadium on a beautiful Lawrence day!

Kansas football players

My favorite KU memory is…

Snapping the horrible Big 12 losing streak against WVU and celebrating with the student section as they rushed the field. It was only our second win that season but it was our Super Bowl and I’ll never forget that game and the euphoric feeling of celebrating with my peers.

My best advice for college students is…

Get involved on campus early. KU has more than 600 student clubs and organizations, pick one and join. That way, you have an immediate cohort of friends to lean on when college gets tough. Also, it gives you a chance to build relationships and build your network for professional opportunities after you walk the hill.

Learn more about the programs Keon works on, including the Student Alumni Network and the Student Alumni Leadership Board. For more information about student programs, contact him at kstowers@kualumni.org

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