$3 million grant to commercialize materials made at PSU

PITTSBURG, Kan. – Pittsburg State University accepts a $3 million grant to boost the commercialization of materials made on campus.

U.S. Senator Jerry Moran, Pittsburg State University President Dan Shipp and PSU Chief Strategy Officer Shawn Naccarato made the grant announced today.

PSU houses the National Institute for Materials Advancement (NIMA) in its Tyler Research Center.

“There, internationally recognized scientists work with faculty and students from the College of Technology and the Polymer Chemistry Initiative, along with state and federal agencies, to find ways to use sustainable materials to create products that can be commercialized — products like a new battery made from coffee grounds, a new golf ball made from soybean waste, and a type of non-flammable foam made from castor oil.” – PSU

The U.S. Senate Appropriations Committee awarded PSU a $3 million grant to help launch a Center of Commercialization for NIMA. This mondy will help PSU find ways to make those products commercially available.

“This will allow us bring in business partners and help us create economic development teams to build a plastics and polymers industry,” said Executive Director Tim Dawsey, who said such a center has been a goal for seven or eight years. “There is nobody within 300 miles of here who has the capabilities we have.”

PSU states it will also help fund a “prove-out center,” which will create and reshore manufacturing jobs for products currently purchased overseas.

Appropriations Committee

The U.S. Senate Appropriations Committee secured the grant for PSU. Sen. Jerry Moran (R-Kan.) represented them in Pittsburg today.

“I have a dream for my state…I recognize that while we have lots of attributes in our economy, lots of pillars, how good it would be if we could add science, mathematics, engineering, and research, to that component,” Moran said, “so we have in place not only students who are learning here, but economic activities that create jobs and opportunities for people to pursue their dreams in Kansas. This is one more step.”

Shipp says Moran also helped secure funding to finish the PSU Kansas Technology Center in 1995.

“Since 2015, Sen. Moran has secured for us nearly $8 million to fund, launch, and advance materials science, and now, commercialization focused on jobs and the creation of opportunity and shared prosperity throughout our entire Southeast Kansas Region and the State of Kansas,” Naccarato said.

NIMA and the center align with the strategic plans at the Kansas Board of Regents and the Kansas Department of Commerce for job creation. That’s according to Pittsburg State University.

You can learn more about NIMA here.