The Bank of America Charitable Foundation has awarded a $250,000 grant in support of Wichita State University’s campaign to build a new home for the W. Frank Barton School of Business on the Innovation Campus. The Innovation Campus is a 120-acre development where businesses, both local and from across the globe, have established operations that employ Wichita State students as part of their workforce.
“Bank of America and Wichita State University have a shared mission in supporting the development of our young people in the business world,” said Shawn Lancelot, Wichita market president, Bank of America. “We’re excited to be a part of this new facility, which will bring together WSU students, faculty and business leaders, fostering an environment of collaboration and entrepreneurial spirit for generations to come.”
Elizabeth King, president and CEO of the WSU Foundation, which is leading efforts to raise private funds for the new facility, thanked Bank of America for strengthening its long-standing partnership with Wichita State.
“It is only through the generosity of donors like Bank of America that Wichita State is able to provide the kind of education tomorrow’s students will require,” King said. “The new business school facility will help give WSU graduates the competitive edge they need to be successful.”
More than 2,000 students and hundreds of faculty and business leaders will use the new facility, making it a dynamic hub of business and commerce. Classrooms will be technologically up to date with smart boards and video capabilities for distance learning, and will be across from faculty offices and near collaboration spaces. Over time, the university anticipates student expansion in the school of business in keeping with their goal to increase enrollment.
Previous bank grants to the university were used to underwrite a high-quality virtual trading software program called Stock Trak for the Koch Global Trading Center at the W. Frank Barton School of Business, as well as support the Office of Cooperative Education & Work-based Learning and the Office of Multicultural Affairs. The latter two programs helped prepare underserved, first-generation minority students for the workforce through workshops that focus on resume development, interviewing skills, self-marketing to potential employers, dressing for success, learning employer expectations, strategic networking with professionals, and developing or increasing budget and financial literacy. Additionally, Bank of America has provided years of funding for student education and scholarship support as well as donated to the Charles Koch Arena in support of the Bank of America entrance on the west side of the arena.
A public university in the Kansas Board of Regents system of higher education, Wichita State University has an enrollment of about 13,800 students. Its mission is to be an essential educational, cultural and economic driver for Kansas and the greater public good. With a focus on innovation, applied learning and entrepreneurship, Wichita State is an ideal environment for students, industry and community to work together to build a bright future for our city, region and world.
At Bank of America, we’re guided by a common purpose to help make financial lives better, through the power of every connection. We’re delivering on this through responsible growth with a focus on our environmental, social and governance (ESG) leadership. ESG is embedded across our eight lines of business and reflects how we help fuel the global economy, build trust and credibility, and represent a company that people want to work for, invest in and do business with. It’s demonstrated in the inclusive and supportive workplace we create for our employees, the responsible products and services we offer our clients, and the impact we make around the world in helping local economies thrive. An important part of this work is forming strong partnerships with nonprofits and advocacy groups, such as community, consumer and environmental organizations, to bring together our collective networks and expertise to achieve greater impact. Connect with us on Twitter (@BofA_News).
Lynn Deckinger, WSU Foundation
Diane Wagner, Bank of America