Kennesaw State University

Board of Regents approves property purchase for Kennesaw State

Kennesaw State University

Site near Kennesaw Campus will serve a role in the University’s future growth

KENNESAW‚ Ga. (Jan. 7, 2016) — The Board of Regents of the University System of Georgia on Wednesday approved the purchase of property east of Kennesaw State University’s Kennesaw Campus to be utilized in KSU’s future development.

The Board of Regents will acquire 1.02 acres at 3051 George Busbee Parkway from Cobb County for $875,000. The property – formerly occupied by Kids R Kids – includes a 12,320-square-foot, one-story building and adjacent parking area. Funding for the property acquisition will come from state bonds earmarked for infrastructure expansion at Kennesaw State.

With this latest land acquisition, the University’s Kennesaw Campus will occupy a total of 384 acres, and the Marietta Campus will occupy 197 acres.

“We appreciate the Board of Regents approving this acquisition and enabling us to secure the real estate and facilities needed to meet the demands of our rapidly-growing student population,” Papp said. “Space continues to be at a premium as Kennesaw State evolves into a world-class institution, so this new property will strongly support our master plan and the vision we have for the University’s future.”

The property is located across the street from the 88-acre KSU Sports and Entertainment Park, which includes Fifth Third Bank Stadium. It is also adjacent to the land the University previously purchased at the former BrandsMart USA site on Busbee Drive in Kennesaw, which was approved by the BOR in February 2015.

The former BrandsMart building currently serves as the home of Kennesaw State’s marching band and also provides much-needed warehouse space. A master plan is currently in development for the remainder of the facility. The adjacent parking lot also provides additional parking spaces for the University’s use.

Conceptual plans for renovating the former Kids R Kids building to help meet the University’s growth demands are currently being developed and reviewed.

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Kennesaw State University is the third-largest university in Georgia, offering nearly 150 undergraduate, graduate and doctoral degrees. A member of the University System of Georgia, Kennesaw State is a comprehensive university with more than 33,000 students from over 130 countries. In January 2015, Kennesaw State and Southern Polytechnic State University consolidated to create one of the 50 largest public universities in the country.

Kennesaw State University receives $11,000 grant from the Governor’s Office of Highway Safety

KENNESAW, Ga. (Dec. 18, 2015) – The Center for Health Promotion and Wellness at Kennesaw State University is proud to announce the receipt of an $11,000 grant to participate in the GOHS Georgia Young Adult Program. The Governor’s Office of Highway Safety addresses young adult driver crashes, injuries and fatalities and partners with colleges and universities throughout the state to implement the Georgia Young Adult Program (GYAP). This program has proven to be successful using strategies such as peer education, providing educational speakers to schools, and encouraging schools to develop creative, innovative techniques to reduce young adult crashes, injuries and fatalities in their communities.

 “The Governor’s Office of Highway Safety is committed to changing the tragic trend of young adult driver deaths in Georgia,” said GOHS Director Harris Blackwood. “We’re here to make changes and I believe the students at Kennesaw State University can help us achieve the goal of lowering driver, crash, injury and fatality rates statewide. Who better to address the challenges and dangers facing young adults than their peers? I’m confident these students can convince their peers to be safer, more conscientious drivers.”

Kennesaw State University will coordinate events such as impaired driving prevention programs, including social norming promotion and distribution of BAC ZONE cards which provide personalized information on the effects of blood alcohol concentration. Programming often surrounds events such as National Collegiate Alcohol Awareness Week and Safe Spring Break. Programs involve collaborations with the campus Greek community, student athletes, residential student communities, campus police and counseling services.

The grant runs Oct. 1, 2015 through Sept. 30, 2016. The grant is the Center for Health Promotion and Wellness’ ninth award from GOHS.

Al Thurman Elected First Cobb African-American Mayor

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By Tasnim Samma /Posted Dec. 3, 2015


Al Thurman, a former Powder Springs City Council member, will become the first African-American mayor of any city in Cobb County.

He won a run-off election Tuesday -- a sign, experts say, that demographics in the city are changing.

Al Thurman defeated Powder Springs physician and councilman Chris Wizner, by 179 votes, or more than 14 percent. ...

Powder Springs 

According to the 2010 census, nearly 50 percent of the city of Powder Springs population is African-American and nine percent identifies as Hispanic or Latino.  

“In Cobb County, a number of state legislators are now African-American and they’ve supplanted white Democrats who used to hold those seats, so I look at the Powder Springs mayoral election as the continuation of a trend where the county is becoming increasingly diversified," explained Kerwin Swint, a professor at Kennesaw State University who lives near Powder Springs in Cobb County.

Swint said the southern halves of both Cobb and Gwinnett counties in the last five to 10 years are seeing greater minority representation in state and local government. 

The current mayor, Pat Vaughn, is retiring this year after serving the city for more than a decade. 


Group seeks records involving breach of Georgia voter data

Name of Publication: 
The Atlanta Journal-Constitution
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Posted: 3:33 p.m. Friday, Dec. 4, 2015

By Kristina Torres- The Atlanta Journal-Constitution 

A journalism group called on Georgia Secretary of State Brian Kemp on Friday to release public records detailing how a massive data breach in the office happened and exactly how outside groups handled more than 6 million voters’ personal information.

The Georgia chapter of the Society of Professional Journalists said the agency wrongly cited state law about open records in Georgia. The law allows agencies to exempt public documents from disclosure if they relate to an open internal investigation, although it is not mandatory in most cases.

“The open investigation exemption of the Open Records Act only applies to law enforcement, prosecution or regulatory agencies,” said Kennesaw State University journalism professor Carolyn Carlson, a former SPJ national president and Freedom of Information Committee member. “It specifically does not apply to records kept by the agency that is the subject of an investigation.”

Agency officials on Friday stood by their action, citing a different section of the law that allows them to shield records related to the suspension, firing or investigation of complaints against public officers or employees. They also repeated plans to release documents after the agency completes its investigation. ...

Nigeria: Varsity Don Tasks Journalists On Conflict Reporting

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A lecturer at the Journalism and Citizen Media Department of Communication Kennesaw State University (KSU), Georgia United States, Prof. Farooq Kperogi, has tasked Nigerian journalists to evolve mechanism of resolving conflicts through their reportage.

He gave the advice in Abuja at a two-day training workshop on Conflict Sensitive Communications (CSC) for Newspapers and online Editor organised by the Nigeria Stabilisation and Reconciliation Program (NSRP).

Kperogi who is also columnist with Daily Trust Newspapers said the traditional media still have important roles to play in resolving conflicts despite the immediacy advantage the online and social media have.

He said the application of accuracy, verifiability, balance, responsibility and other principles of good journalism in conflict reporting will go a long way to aid reporters avoid the pitfalls of escalating conflict in their reporting.

"Conflict sensitive reporting is also called Peace Journalism and journalist should avoid innuendos, adjectives and other inflammatory words capable of escalating conflicts rather than resolving them," Kperogi said. ...

Construction approved for Georgia Film Academy in Fayetteville

Name of Publication: 
The Citizen
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Wed, 11/25/2015 - 2:00pm Ben Nelms

A new Georgia Film Academy in Fayetteville is set to open in January. Following in February will be the completion of a 15,000 sq. ft. soundstage for student use to be located adjacent to the Pinewood Production Centre on Sandy Creek Road. Nov. 17 by the Fayetteville Planning and Zoning Commission, architect Bill Foley said plans include having the 15,000 sq. ft. soundstage building ready in February. The soundstage will have an elevation of 47 feet, though it will not be visible from Sandy Creek Road and will not be seen from nearby Veterans Parkway, Foley said. Other plans include additional landscaping and the ability to convert the production centre area from septic to city sewer when needed, said Foley. ...

The new film academy will open its doors in January and, according to its Executive Director Jeff Stepakoff, the intent is to offer for-credit courses in conjunction with the University System of Georgia (USG) and the Technical College System of Georgia (TCSG) along with continuing education course work.

“There is tremendous support and interest in the film academy,” said Stepakoff, a professor of film and television writing at Kennesaw State University who has been involved in producing, writing and content creation for both television and motion pictures.

Stepakoff said industry partners, such as Pinewood Atlanta, are integral to the film academy’s goals and intent.

“We’re very excited about the potential,” Stepakoff said. “We’re excited about putting Georgians to work on soundstages and on the set.”

Thurman: ‘I’m not the black mayor; I’m the mayor’

Name of Publication: 
The Marietta Daily Journal
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by Kimeko McCoy
December 03, 2015 12:01 AM

POWDER SPRINGS — After spending a portion of Wednesday morning removing “Vote Al Thurman” signs from yards across the city, the next mayor of Powder Springs said he’s still trying to grasp the implications of his victory. 

“It’s taking me a minute to get my arms around it,” said Thurman, who previously served 13 years on the Powder Springs City Council. “My phone has been blowing up with support from all over the country.”

The 58-year-old business owner won Tuesday’s runoff with 57 percent of the votes against councilman and family physician Chris Wizner, who had 43 percent of the total 1,237 votes, according to unofficial numbers from the Cobb Board of Elections. ...

Thurman will be the first black mayor of a Cobb County city. While he embraces that distinction, Thurman said it’s not his main focus and he hopes his service to the community will surpass the color barrier.

“I’m not the black mayor. I’m the mayor. I’m here to serve everyone,” Thurman said. “The demographics are changing and this is a clear reflection of this change.”

Kerwin Swint, a political science professor at Kennesaw State University, also cited the area’s changing demographics regarding Thurman’s win. 

Powder Springs’ population, as reported by the 2010 U.S. Census, is 38 percent white (using the Census designation “white alone, not Hispanic or Latino”) and 49 percent black.

“It shows it’s part of a trend in county politics as the southern part of the county becomes more diverse,” Swint said. ...


Anatomy of Engagement

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From left, Alice Fazlollah and students Michael McClung and Chelsy Schrock

Anthropology project helps law officers understand impact of bomb explosions

KENNESAW, Ga. (Nov. 25, 2015) — Days after tragedy struck in Paris, France, the threat posed by terrorists who kill and maim by shooting and detonating explosives added urgency to research underway in a forensic anthropology lab at Kennesaw State University. 

Comparing Notes

PEGS students Regan Grillo and Lisa Smith

Student symposium showcases US-Brazilian cooperation, cultural differences

KENNESAW, Ga. (Nov. 20, 2015) — Kennesaw State University students joined their peers from universities across Georgia and Brazil this month to present the results of research projects highlighting global trends and challenges in Brazil and the greater Portuguese-speaking world.

Acts of Faith

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Kennesaw student defies odds to open Montessori school

KENNESAW, Ga. (Nov. 19, 2015) —  The story of a Kennesaw State international student-turned-entrepreneur can be summed up in her name: Faith.

From the moment in April 2013 that Faith Wangunyu, a senior international affairs major, entered a Montessori classroom while on a tour with her leadership class, she envisioned herself running such a school, perhaps in her native Kenya.

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