$2 Million Federal Grant Helps K-State Efforts to Expand Digital Manufacturing Outreach Programs Across Region

Manhattan, Kan. — Kansas State University’s Technology Development Institute will use a $2 million Economic Adjustment Assistance grant from the U.S. Department of Commerce Economic Development Administration, or EDA, to support manufacturers across the state with new digital manufacturing education and service offerings.

The grant, which also will be matched with a $500,000 commitment from K-State, will be used to acquire cutting-edge additive manufacturing technologies, robotics and other industrial software tools to help train, educate and develop new digital manufacturing capabilities for manufacturing industries in Kansas.

“As part of our daily operations, we are in regular contact with manufacturing companies and we are always seeking ways to help them to leverage advanced technologies to improve their competitiveness in the global marketplace,” said Jeff Tucker, executive director of the Technology Development Institute. “We view this investment in digital manufacturing, equipment, tools and training by the EDA as a crucial step in helping meet the needs of regional manufacturers who are struggling to remain competitive in light of all the recent economic challenges.”

These new technologies can augment and enhance current manufacturing operations and enable companies to continue their efforts to drive down costs, proactively address labor shortages and increase supply chain resilience, Tucker said.

“The Kansas Framework for Growth identifies advanced manufacturing as a target sector, and Kansas’ recent economic development successes reflect the high priority we have placed on expanding manufacturing in the state,” said David Toland, Kansas lieutenant governor and director of the state Department of Commerce. “We are grateful for EDA’s support, which will provide Kansas manufacturers with access to the latest technology in order to compete and succeed in today’s business environment.”

University funding for the project shows K-State’s commitment to serving the people of Kansas by strengthening the state’s economy, said David Rosowsky, K-State vice president for research.

“The investment by K-State in this initiative is part of the overall commitment to the recently launched K-State Economic Prosperity Plan, which ensures we are providing educational and technical assistance services to all sectors and regions of Kansas to improve economic prosperity,” Rosowsky said. “We are extremely pleased that the EDA has chosen to support this digital manufacturing outreach program which I believe will have a positive impact across all 105 counties in Kansas.”

The K-State Technology Development Institute, a U.S. Department of Commerce Economic Development Administration University Center and part of the Carl R. Ice College of Engineering, provides a broad range of engineering and business development services to both private industry and university researchers to advance the commercial readiness of new products or technologies. Additional information is available at k-state.edu/tdi.

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