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Kennesaw State named a 2014 “Great College to Work For”

One of only two universities and only public institution in Georgia recognized
KENNESAW, Ga. (July 21, 2014) ¾ For the third year in a row, The Chronicle of Higher Education has recognized Kennesaw State University as a “Great College to Work For,” giving it top honors in two categories: facilities, workspace and security;and work/life balance.
Of the 92 institutions recognized in this year’s survey, Kennesaw State was one of only two Georgia universities recognized in the survey, and the only public institution in the state to make the cut. According to The Chronicle, the Great Colleges survey included a two-part assessment process: a survey administered to faculty, administrators, and professional support staff; and an institutional audit that captured demographics and workplace policies and practices from each institution. The primary factor in deciding whether an institution received a “Great College to Work For” recognition was the employee feedback.  
“We are extremely honored to once again earn this recognition from The Chronicle of Higher Education in its ‘2014 Great Colleges to Work For®’ survey,”said Kennesaw State President Daniel S. Papp. “Our faculty, staff and administrators are the backbone of this institution and the driving force behind our rising national reputation. It is their hard work and dedication that provides our nearly 25,000 students access to a transformational education.”
This is the second year Kennesaw State employees have said campus facilities meet their needs, while also agreeing the appearance of the campus is pleasing. The university also received kudos for creating policies that provide employees the flexibility to manage their lives on the job and at home. Employees agreed with statements such as, “My supervisor/department chair supports my efforts to balance my work and personal life.”
“Kennesaw State’s working and learning environment supports employees’ day-to-day efforts,” said Rodney Bossert, the university’s assistant vice president for human resources. “We strive to make our processes for professional development, communications, and access to institutional services and resources as open and user friendly as possible. As a result of these investments, the institution reaps an enormous dividend: a highly motivated, well-informed, and well-equipped faculty and staff, who work well together and share the institution’s goal of ensuring our students receive a world-class education.”
Kennesaw State offers a generous employee benefits package, including paid sick days, vacation leave, an employee assistance program and a free online work-life resource guide that provides comprehensive locator services to help employees find summer camp options, child care, elder care and adoption, among many other work-life issues.
Also recognized in the facilities/workspace/security category, Kennesaw State’s campus offers several new or updated office buildings, classrooms and other facilities. Among its newest buildings, two have attained LEED Gold certification for state-of-the-art, environmentally friendly construction. A nationally recognized emergency system enables succinct communication between all of the support departments traditionally charged with security/safety and the campus community.
The Department of Strategic Security & Safety uses a “layered approach” to emergency communications for Kennesaw State. The first layer of the Kennesaw State Preparedness and Response System (KSPARS) uses a siren with voice-over operation for “sheltering in” emergencies, such as tornado warnings, active shooter situations and hazardous material spills – on and nearby campus. Other layers include: cell phone (voice messaging and SMS Texting) and email notifications of emergency situations; utilization of a “PopUp” screen on individual and classroom computers, both PCs and Macs, that will flash a message with specific instructions on what to do in a critical-incident scenario; and integration of existing digital signage on- and off-campus to enable specific notifications on evacuations, lockdowns and “stay away” directives.
This year’s survey encompassed responses from nearly 44,000 people at 278 institutions. All accredited institutions in the United States are invited to participate, and participation is free.
Full results of The Chronicle’s annual survey can be viewed online at:
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Kennesaw State University is the third-largest university in Georgia, offering more than 90 graduate and undergraduate degrees, including doctorates in education, business and nursing and a new Ph.D. in international conflict management. A member of the University System of Georgia, Kennesaw State is a comprehensive, residential institution with a growing student population of more than 24,600 from 130 countries.

Entertainment law leader Joel A. Katz to speak at Kennesaw State University commencement

Joel A. Katz

Nearly 1,200 students will participate during summer commencement July 29

KENNESAW, Ga. (July 15, 2014) — Nearly 1,200 students will participate in summer commencement ceremonies on July 29. Entertainment law leader Joel A. Katz will address students in the morning ceremony, which includes graduates of the College of the Arts, Michael J. Coles College of Business, WellStar College of Health and Human Services, and University College. Other speakers include John Thomas Grant, Jr., CEO of 100 Black Men of Atlanta, Inc., and Hans Gant, a senior-level economic development executive and former senior vice president of economic development at the Metro Atlanta Chamber.


Commencement schedule:

College of the Arts, Michael J. Coles College of Business, WellStar College of Health & Human Services, and University College – July 29, 10 a.m.

Speaker: Joel A. Katz

Joel A. Katz is the chairman of the Global Entertainment and Media Practice at Greenberg Traurig LLP. The former chairman of the American Bar Association's Entertainment & Sports Law Section, Katz is widely recognized as a leader in entertainment law. His clients include some of the world's most well-known entertainers, music producers, record companies, concert promoters and Fortune 500 companies.

Katz is a member of many professional and community boards, including the Million Women March for Endometriosis; the Luxure Media Group; MultiplyLive; GRAMMY Museum; Georgia Film, Video and Music Advisory Commission; and many others. He is a major supporter of the Joel A. Katz Music and Entertainment Business Program at Kennesaw State, which was named in his honor.

(click here for downloadable photo of Joel A. Katz)

Bagwell College of Education, College of Humanities and Social Sciences, and College of Science and Mathematics – July 29, 3 p.m.

Speaker: John Grant, Jr.

John Thomas Grant, Jr. became CEO of 100 Black Men of Atlanta, Inc. in 2001, and has been a member of the organization for more than 20 years. As CEO, he is responsible for managing the organization’s day-to-day growth and direction. Under his leadership, the group has attained a level of visibility and prominence that underscores the importance of the philanthropic mission established by its founders.

Grant currently serves on several boards, including True Colors Theater Company, Central Atlanta Progress, Atlanta Convention & Visitors Bureau, Georgia Humanities Council, National Wildlife Federation Executive Committee and Atlanta Sports Council. He has been a recipient of the President of the United States’ Service Award and Atlanta Technical College’s Bridge Builder Award.

(click here for downloadable photo of John Grant, Jr.)

Graduate College – July 29, 7 p.m.

Speaker: Hans Gant

Hans Gant is the former senior vice president of economic development at the Metro Atlanta Chamber, where he led economic development operations resulting in the attraction or expansion of nearly 900 companies and the creation of up to 90,000 jobs. He has more than 24 years of experience in driving job growth through domestic and international business development.

Gant directed or substantially contributed to the execution of five capital campaigns generating more than $90 million. He has served on the boards of the MIT Enterprise Forum of Atlanta, Georgia Biomedical Partnership, Technology Association of Georgia, Georgia Tech Economic Development Institute, Georgia Economic Development Association, CoreNet Global and Urban Land Institute.

(click here for downloadable photo of Hans Gant)


Kennesaw State University Convocation Center, 1000 Chastain Road, Kennesaw, Ga., 30144. For more information, please go to

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Kennesaw State University is the third-largest university in Georgia, offering 90 graduate and undergraduate degrees, including doctorates in education, business and nursing and a Ph.D. in international conflict management. A member of the University System of Georgia, Kennesaw State is a comprehensive, residential institution with a growing student population of 24,600 from 130 countries.


Contact: Robert S. Godlewski, 770-499-3448,

Tennis Teams Earn Academic Honors

KENNESAW, Ga. (July 15, 2014) – The Kennesaw State men’s and women's tennis teams earned Intercollegiate Tennis Association (ITA) All-Academic Team honors while 10 student-athletes were recognized as ITA Scholar-Athletes, the organization announced on July 10.
Senior Alexandra Apostu and juniors Jana Hueckinghaus and Virginie Stein from the women’s team were recognized for their accomplishments in the classroom during the 2013-14 academic year. Juniors Alex Pena and Louis Theodor, sophomores Jorge Wilton and Maksim Yorsh, and freshmen Jake Bouchillon, David Durham and Simon Pritchard were honored on the men’s side.
The ITA All-Academic Team award is open to any ITA program that has a cumulative team grade point average of 3.20 or above (on a 4.00 scale). All eligible student-athletes whose names appear on the NCAA/NAIA/NJCAA/CA JUCO eligibility form and have competed in one or more varsity matches must average into the GPA for the current academic year (including fall 2013 and spring 2014).
In order to earn ITA Scholar-Athlete status, a player must meet the following criteria: 1) be a varsity letter winner, 2) have a grade point average of at least 3.50 (on a 4.00 scale) for the current academic year, and 3) have been enrolled at their present school for at least two semesters (including freshman through senior year).
"I want to congratulate the team for its hard work not only on the court but in the classroom," women’s tennis head coach Jeff Kutac said. "Earning ITA academic honors does not come without a lot of hard work, discipline and dedication to school work, and I am happy to see the team honored for its commitment and each individual understanding what it means to be a true student-athlete."
Kennesaw State men’s head coach Eduardo Rincon was equally complimentary of his team’s academic accomplishments.
"I am extremely proud of the team for earning ITA All-Academic honors," Rincon said. "I know how hard they have worked in order to achieve a level of success academically and have seen how much this means to them based on the time and hard work they have put into their academics while at home and on the road. It is an honor and privilege to be able to help guide these student-athletes day-in and day-out during their college years."

Keep up with Kennesaw State Athletics by following KSU on Twitter @KSUOwlNation and/or by liking Kennesaw State Owls on Facebook. You also can follow Kennesaw State women's tennis at @KSUWomensTennis and the men’s team at @KSUMensTennis.

- #GoKSUOwls -

Kennesaw State University’s Distance Learning Center honored by Campus Technology magazine

Campus Technology.jpg

Center recognized for its evaluation system of massive open online courses

KENNESAW, Ga.  (July 10, 2014) — A leader in online learning, Kennesaw State University was among 11 universities honored with a Campus Technology Innovators Award by Campus Technology magazine for innovative and visionary technology project leadership.

The University was recognized in the Administrative Systems category for its Virtual Assessment Center, a tool created and used to assess Massive Open Online Courses (MOOCs), KSU’s newest learning model.

“Our process and business model – and the application we developed –answered how to evaluate and accept MOOCs for credit,” said Elke Leeds, assistant vice president, technology-enhanced education. “We created a turnkey approach so faculty could easily assess MOOCs.”

Each year, the Campus Technology Innovators Awards recognize exemplary colleges and universities, their visionary technology project leadership, and their innovative technology vendor partners that have taken technology to extraordinary new heights to meet today’s challenges on campus.

This year, 11 universities were honored from 215 nominations submitted for Campus Technology’s 10th annual awards in six different categories. 

“The 2014 Campus Technology Innovators are an extraordinary group of technology leaders in higher education. I'm pleased to congratulate all of the awardees for their innovative work and recognize the technologies that have helped their projects succeed,” said Rhea Kelly, executive editor, Campus Technology.

This year’s honorees will be recognized with a special feature in the July all-digital issue of Campus Technology magazine and an awards ceremony at the Campus Technology 2014 conference in Boston July 28-31.

For more information on Campus Technology magazine’s 2014 Innovator Awards, visit the website at

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Kennesaw State University is the third-largest university in Georgia, offering 90 graduate and undergraduate degrees, including doctorates in education, business and nursing and a Ph.D. in international conflict management. A member of the University System of Georgia, Kennesaw State is a comprehensive, residential institution with a growing student population of more than 24,600 from 130 countries.

Owls Land Five on WGCA 2013-14 All-American Scholars Team

Kennesaw State women's golf

Lescudier, Pedersen, Clinning, Sverdloff, Estefenn earn accolade

KENNESAW, Ga. (JULY 2, 2014)  The accolades continued to roll in for the Kennesaw State women's golf team as five student-athletes were named to the Women's Golf Coaches Association (WGCA) All-America Scholars Team, the WGCA announced Wednesday, July 2. 

Rising seniors Ines LescudierMette Pedersen and Hayley Clinning, along with rising sophomores Dulcie Sverdloff and Laura Estefenn each earned the prestigious honor for the Owls. 

"I am incredibly proud of my players that earned Academic All-American honors," said head coach Rhyll Brinsmead. "This is a huge achievement, particularly considering the travel we completed this spring with eight events. I love the accountability each of these student-athletes took on in regards to their academics and athletic achievement. We set a high bar and every one of them met this goal. It is such an honor to serve as their coach and they continue to make me proud with honors such as this." 

The criteria for selection to the All-American Scholar Team are some of the most stringent in all of college athletics, with student-athletes having to earn a minimum cumulative GPA of 3.50 to be eligible for the award. A total of 664 women's collegiate golfers from Division I, II and III were recognized with the accolade. 

To keep up with the latest Kennesaw State women's golf news follow the team on Twitter @KSUOwlNation and @KSUOwlsWmnsGolf or by liking Kennesaw State University onFacebook.

Georgia manufacturing activity shows slight improvement for June


Drop in new orders and production drives other components in monthly survey

KENNESAW, Ga.  (July 1, 2014) — Georgia manufacturing activity remained relatively stable for June, according to the Purchasing Managers Index (PMI) released today by Kennesaw State University’s Econometric Center in the Michael J. Coles College of Business.  The Georgia PMI for June increased by 0.5 of a point to 57.3.

According to the report, the five PMI components split for June with three components – new orders, production and employment – decreasing and two components increasing.  Georgia’s June new orders and production fell, but remain at relatively high levels, according to Don Sabbarese, director of the Econometric Center and professor of economics at Kennesaw State.  

“The recent slip in new orders and production ultimately drives the other components,” Sabbarese said. “Despite the drop, the new orders and production readings are still at sustainable growth levels, with 42.3 percent of respondents still reporting increases.”

“Future production expectations for the next three to six months were down compared to previous months. When asked in a separate survey question, only 27 percent of respondents expect higher production for June compared to 45 percent for May,” Sabbarase said. “This may be a harbinger for the future trend, but it’s still too early to tell.”

Other highlights from the June PMI:

  • New orders down 2.8 points to 65.4, 2.3 points above its six-month average
  • Production down 2.4 points to 63.5, 3.8 points above its six-month average
  • Employment down 3.0 points to 53.8, 4.4 points below its six-month average
  • Supplier delivery up 5.1 points to 59.6, 1.3 points above its six-month average
  • Finished inventory up 5.6 points to 44.2, 4.9 points below its six-month average
  • Commodity prices down 16.3 points to 51.9, 5.3 points below its six-month average

The Georgia PMI provides a snapshot of manufacturing activity in the state, just as the monthly PMI released by the Institute for Supply Management provides a picture of national manufacturing activity. A PMI reading above 50 indicates that manufacturing activity is expanding; a reading below 50 indicates it is contracting.  

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Pentecost Wins Johnny Bench Award


Recognized as Top Collegiate Catcher

WICHITA, Kan. – Kennesaw State catcher Max Pentecost took home top billing in the NCAA Division I catcher's world on Thursday night, winning the Johnny Bench Award at the Greater Wichita Area Sports Commission banquet.
The award, sponsored by, recognizes the top catcher in the nation, making Pentecost the first KSU player to win the accolade as well as the first in the Atlantic Sun Conference and first from the state of Georgia.
Pentecost was one of three finalists in the running for the trophy, along with Indiana's Kyle Schwarber and Ole Miss' Will Allen.The catcher joins rare company in the award-winning club, putting him beside past winners such as Florida State's Buster Posey and Cal State Fullerton's Kurt Suzuki through the 17-years the accolade has been distributed.
During the historic 2014 season, Pentecost led the nation in total hits with 113 and was second in batting average at .422, both of which set new A-Sun and KSU single-season records.
Of his 113 hits, 24 were doubles with nine home runs and a pair of triples to go with his 61 RBIs and 168 total bases. Pentecost also drew 30 walks while striking out a miniscule 26 times in 268 at-bats.
The backstop also caught 22 runners attempting to steal on the defensive end while leading KSU in the stolen base category offensively at 17.
While leading KSU to its first ever A-Sun and NCAA Division I Regional Titles, Pentecost was named to five separate First Team All-American lists while also being named the A-Sun Player of the Year, the first ever for the Owls.
Pentecost then became the school's highest MLB draft pick when he went at No. 11 overall to the Toronto Blue Jays.

To keep up with the latest Kennesaw State baseball news, follow the team on Twitter @KSUOwlNation and @KSUOwlsBaseball or by liking Kennesaw State University on Facebook.

Lockheed Martin supports math education at Kennesaw State University

Lockheed Martin funds summer camp for high school students


Contact: Robert S. Godlewski,, 770-499-3448

Gift benefits high school students, provides mentoring for women in science and math

KENNESAW, Ga. (JUNE 26, 2014) — Lockheed Martin is partnering with Kennesaw State University to invest dollars and talent in high school students interested in mathematics. The company has awarded a $16,000 gift to help fund a summer camp program for high school students on the campus of Kennesaw State University, as well as provide funds to promote and support women in science and mathematics.

KSU’s Department of Mathematics and Statistics and the ATOMS Center (Advancing the Teaching Of Mathematics and Science) welcomed Lockheed officials for a special presentation during the KSU Math Circle Summer Camp for Georgia high school students. Chuck Tanner, a Lockheed systems engineer, spoke with campers about career opportunities in mathematics.

“This gift will support programs that encompass the mission of the ATOMS Center,” said Adrian Epps, director of KSU's ATOMS Center. “We are so thankful to have Lockheed Martin as a philanthropic partner to support mathematics opportunities for KSU students, high school students and area high school teachers.”

Through the KSU Math Circle Summer Camp, KSU faculty offer high school students collegiate mathematics learning opportunities that they would not normally see at the high school level.

“Lockheed’s generosity will also extend to Metro Atlanta Math Teachers’ Circle activities from August 2014 to May 2015,” said Joe DeMaio, chair of the KSU Department of Mathematics and Statistics. “Lockheed's gift will support Kennesaw Women in Mathematics, a program for collegiate women to network with outstanding achievers in math-related professions to create a broader perspective of the career opportunities in mathematics.”

The allocation of the gift is as follows: $10,000 for Associate Professor Virginia Watson's Math Teacher Circles ($5,000 for Math Teachers Circles throughout the year and $5,000 for the summer camp for high school students) and an additional $6,000 for Associate Professor Yuliya Babenko’s Kennesaw Women in Mathematics (KWIM).

“Lockheed Martin has a strong tradition of giving back both through philanthropy and the tireless volunteer work of our employees,” said Shan Cooper, vice president and general manager Lockheed Martin Aeronautics Marietta facility. “We think it’s important to encourage young people to continue their educational growth, especially in science and mathematics. These are the building blocks that help them to reach for the stars.”

The KSU Math Circle Summer Camp is a two-week day camp for 20 high school students to stimulate interest in the mathematical sciences. Students work in small groups with a faculty member on a mathematical project, learn from guest mathematicians and participate in mathematical activities.

This year’s camp will be partially funded by the American Mathematical Society Epsilon Fund. The AMS was founded in 1888 to further the interests of mathematical research and scholarship and preserve the national and international community through its publications, meetings, advocacy and other programs.

KWIM creates a social and professional network of students and mentors to share information about existing opportunities and provide support and advice in professional growth. Funding support provides travel for speakers, student activities and a daylong outreach to high school females called the Queens of Math Day, which encourages young women to explore careers in the mathematical sciences.

“In addition to giving financial support, Lockheed will send members of their talented team of scientists to mentor and inspire at all three of these programs, which is an invaluable level of support,” said Epps.

As an industry leader in global security and information technology, Lockheed Martin provides products and services that address some of the nation’s most critical issues. Lockheed Martin’s leadership in the aviation and space industries depends on assembling teams of some of the most talented and brilliant minds in math and science to solve the toughest problems and challenges.


Headquartered in Bethesda, Md., Lockheed Martin is a global security and aerospace company that employs approximately 113,000 people worldwide and is principally engaged in the research, design, development, manufacture, integration and sustainment of advanced technology systems, products and services. The Corporation’s net sales for 2013 were $45.4 billion.


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Kennesaw State University is the third-largest university in Georgia, offering 90 graduate and undergraduate degrees, including doctorates in education, business and nursing and a Ph.D. in international conflict management. A member of the University System of Georgia, Kennesaw State is a comprehensive, residential institution with a growing student population of more than 24,600 from 130 countries. 

Kennesaw State students earn research awards from Birla Carbon

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Ten undergraduate students each receive $4,000 for summer research in science and mathematics

KENNESAW, Ga.  (June 6, 2014) — Summer is usually a time when college students are either taking a break from their studies or looking for ways to make some extra cash. For 10 Kennesaw State University students in the Birla Carbon Scholars Program, summer has become an opportunity to advance scientific and mathematical research.

The new scholars program was developed in April 2014 with a $250,000 pledge from Birla Carbon, a global manufacturer and supplier of carbon black additives, to support research opportunities for students in Kennesaw State’s College of Science and Mathematics. The program kicked off this summer with 10 Kennesaw State students each receiving a $4,000 stipend. This year’s inaugural scholars are:

  • Amber Caldara, a junior majoring in biology;
  • Daniel Hoffman, a junior majoring in biology;
  • Samuel Keenan, a junior majoring in biology;
  • Alden Lathrop, a junior majoring in biochemistry;
  • James Law, a junior majoring in biochemistry;
  • Bradley Norvell, a sophomore majoring in biochemistry;
  • Aaron Pital, a junior majoring in biochemistry;
  • Alberto Romero, a senior majoring in biology;
  • Dennys Rosales, a junior majoring in mathematics; and
  • Maredith Sapp, a junior majoring in biology.

Each student scholar will work side-by-side with faculty researchers on projects dealing with topics from coastal ecosystems to traffic patterns on I-75. They will present their research and findings at an end-of-term symposium in August, and the top student will receive $2,000 toward travel expenses to present his or her research at a national scientific conference during the upcoming academic year.

“Many students are not able to explore summer research programs because they must work full time between the spring and fall semesters,” said Jonathan McMurry, associate dean of research of the College and Science and Mathematics. “This stipend allows them time and financial freedom to expand their research skills outside of the classroom and continue Kennesaw State’s tradition of academic excellence.”

Applicants for the annual scholarship must be freshman, sophomores or juniors during the spring semester in which they apply for the program and have a minimum 3.0 GPA. In addition to the scholars program, funds from the Birla Carbon gift will be used to provide research supplies needed for faculty assisting students and supplies needed for the end-of-the term symposium.

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Birla Carbon is the world’s largest manufacturer and supplier of high-quality carbon black additives. Its customers include leading brands and companies from the tires, rubbers goods, plastics, inks and paints sectors globally. The company has 17 manufacturing facilities in 12 countries and two state-of-the-art Research & Development centers, one of which is located at their operational headquarters in Marietta, Georgia. The company has a history of many firsts under its accomplishments, including being the first to produce Carbon Black Beads and patent Dustless Carbon Black in 1927, and being the first carbon black company to use an industrial electron microscope in 1940. The focus on R&D continues to be relentless with much commitment to constantly enhance the technical and environmental impact of its products and operations. Sustainable operational excellence is a key business driver for Birla Carbon, and the company is investing the required resources on its sustainability initiative. 

Birla Carbon is a flagship business of the $40 billion Aditya Birla Group, an Indian conglomerate with leading presence in aluminum, apparel, cement, financial services, retail and telecom sectors. The group operates in 36 countries with employee strength of more than 136,000 belonging to 42 different nationalities.

More information about Birla Carbon and the Aditya Birla Group is available on their website and


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