Kansas prospects in health sciences keep brightening

A federal animal disease laboratory now in Laramie, Wyo., is moving to Manhattan, Kan., because the National Bio and Agro-Defense Facility will be built on the K-State campus there.
According to the Associated Press report, the lab studies livestock diseases borne by mosquitoes, ticks and other insects. It is expected to open next August.
Sen. Sam Brownback, whose office worked to bring the lab to Kansas, said he expects private businesses to locate in Kansas to take advantage of the advances in the animal health industry that will flow from the research that will be done in the federal facilities.
He and all of the others who helped convince Congress and the scientific community to bring these facilities to Kansas surely are right to assume that the animal health corridor developing from Manhattan to Columbia, Mo., will create hundreds, perhaps thousands, of good-paying jobs in Kansas and Missouri over the next half century.
What can that mean to Allen County?
First, it should entice parents and their student-children to consider that branch of science as a career and start as soon as their age makes it logical to prepare. Biology, chemistry, mathematics and then specialization is the prescription. If not animal health, then the life sciences, which also offer a wide, wide range of career choices with jobs within a two-hour drive of family, friends and a great place to raise kids.
Second, Iola Industries, Humboldt Industries and the county’s governing bodies should advertise Allen County as a good place to start a new business and flourish. Some of the businesses that should sprout and grow in this part of Kansas as a result of these new research centers surely will use grains, grasses, cows, pigs and sheep in one way or another.
Allen County has all of the above right out the front door.
That story, beefed up with offers of bargain industrial sites and competitively priced utilities, should be told enticingly in glowing color over and over again until sales are made.
Sure, much of the economic benefit that accompanies these very important research installations to north central Kansas will stay right there. But some will trickle down. Allen County should have its bucket ready to catch its share.

— Emerson Lynn, jr.