New organization works to grow tech in Kansas

Local

Flagship Kansas wants to bring the Silicon Valley to the Heartland.

The new organization is made up of different tech companies around the state, with the goal of making the industry more visible across the state.

According to the group, there are over 100 tech companies in Wichita.

“Tech in Wichita is bigger than what a lot of people realize,” said Flagship Kansas board member Ben Burrus — who works for PK Technologies.

Flagship Kansas wants to attract tech talent, but also recruit talent from larger metro areas.

“If we could provide an awesome tech scene so that if we are recruiting somebody, let’s say from the Bay Area, we say ‘Hey. If you move here to work for this company, here’s a list of 50 other companies if that doesn’t work out. You’re not relocating, you’re not just stuck,'” explained Burrus.

Group members said some tech talent can’t afford to live in bigger cities, which makes Wichita more attractive.

“They want a thriving downtown area and walkable streets. They want commmunity,” Burrus said. “With everything going on in the downtown area getting that more urban vibe, I think it will kind fo help recruit that talent.”

According to group members, it’s also time to create the same kind of support the state puts in schools for aerospace and agriculture.

“Aviation alone is great but it’ll only get us so far,” said Burrus. “We need a more diverse economy.”

The orgnization wants to work with schools to create educational programs that will help with the tech sector’s needs.

Flagship Kansas is still in its beginning phases, and needs support from community officials, tech companies and tech workers.

The group is hosting a launch event on Feburary 27, from 4-6 pm., at the Advanced Learning Library. 

The public is invited to attend.

To learn more about the organization, visit FlagshipKansas.Tech.

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