October 2020
Determination, innovation power Shocker Nation
By now, many of you have learned about Dr. Jay Golden’s resignation as president of Wichita State University. The Kansas Board of Regents made the announcement Sept. 25.

I know you have many questions and will be searching for answers. While we won’t be able to provide any further details about his decision to step down, we do appreciate Dr. Golden’s dedication and hard work while at Wichita State, and we wish him well. 

We are an institution that exists for our students of yesterday, today and tomorrow. We exist and thrive because of all the individuals who make up our university.

We have faced transition before, and I am reminded of the resilience of our entire campus community almost daily as we have adjusted to COVID-19 during these past months. We know what it is like to navigate through the unexpected; and how to turn challenge into growth. 

In the coming weeks and months, the Board of Regents will announce a process to search for a new president of our institution, and we will continue to keep you informed of the progress when new information becomes available. Until then, we ask that you continue to do your part to keep Wichita State great — in whatever role you might play.

We are powered by the collective determination and innovation of our extraordinary faculty, staff, students, alumni, donors and community. In this newsletter, you will find stories about how we're living this collective determination.

Thank you for being the best part of Shocker Nation!

Dr. Richard Muma, acting president and provost of Wichita State University
In the News at Wichita State
Deloitte and Wichita State launch revolutionary Smart Factory
The new Smart Factory @ Wichita will integrate artificial intelligence, the Internet of Things, digital transformation, and robotics to create a cutting-edge facility that will establish Wichita State’s Innovation Campus as an epicenter of the fourth industrial revolution, known as industry 4.0, drawing companies from around the world to the university to engage our researchers and students. The Smart Factory will fuse the powerful research and development resources of Wichita State and Deloitte to build a 60,000-square-foot facility, which is slated to open in 2021. 
Convergence Sciences researchers focus on solving complex societal problems
Wichita State University has announced the inaugural awardees of the highly competitive President’s Convergence Sciences Research Initiative.

The initiative is an effort to bring together the intellectual curiosity and strengths of faculty and students from a range of disciplines and give them the support to develop research programs that drive the diversity and growth of the Kansas economy while addressing global challenges.
WuShock sculpture unveiled in front of YMCA building
A first-of-its-kind WuShock sculpture was unveiled and dedicated Sept. 15, at the entry plaza of the Steve Clark YMCA and Student Wellness Center.

The 8-foot bronze sculpture is the creation of local artist Wade Hampton, who worked with WSU Athletics and Clark to capture his vision in sketch form, and local artist Connie Ernatt, who transformed the drawing to the final bronze sculpture.
Alum pledges $275,000 to fund scholarships and business building
Saying she wants to help build a new generation of business leaders with a world view, Wichita State alumna Peri Widener has pledged $275,000 to her alma mater. A portion of the gift will launch a program to help develop students into global business leaders.

In addition to initiating the Widener Global Leaders Program, the gift from Widener and her mother, Luanne, includes a pledge of $175,000 to the campaign to build Woolsey Hall, the new home for the W. Frank Barton School of Business. She said the gift celebrates the leadership of Larisa Genin, dean of the Barton School, and her vision for the school.
University Village aims to build up WSU neighborhood
Wichita State University is taking a step forward with community discussions about a University Village initiative, which seeks to create a community destination of dining, entertainment and shopping adjacent to campus.

Through the existing Shocker Neighborhoods initiative, internal discovery and community feedback, Wichita State has identified an initial list of needs to help serve its constituents and the community. The goal is to develop strong, meaningful and high-impact partnerships with qualified developers to address those needs.
Memorial ’70 addition honors survivors of plane crash
The story of the plane crash that killed 14 Shocker football players, 14 staff and boosters, and three crew members was told for years by the Memorial ’70 monument near the 18th Street and Hillside entrance to campus, feels complete. On the 50th anniversary of the crash, a new sculpture recognizes the survivors of the crash. The names of teammates who landed safely in Utah that day are a fitting addition to the existing upright Memorial ’70 monument.

“One of the main reasons we did what we did was so the future generations would know that there were survivors,” Phillips said, “and how their lives were impacted, especially since they lived when so many didn’t. Most, if not all, suffered greatly in silence.”
Hyatt opens on Wichita State’s Innovation Campus
The Hyatt Place at Wichita State University has opened its doors to guests. The 106-room hotel includes free Wi-Fi, fitness facilities, an indoor pool, functional meeting spaces and a restaurant, and bar to serve guests as well as the local community. The hotel is walking distance to Braeburn Square, which features shopping and restaurants. Additionally, visitors can take a stroll onto the main campus for a tour or to take in the university’s pristine campus and sculpture garden.