Kennesaw State University

Barry Loudermilk: Backlash "intensity" unexpected

Name of Publication: 
Bartow Neighbor
Excerpt of Article: 
by Hilary Butschek
January 13, 2015 11:39 AM

The day after voting to re-elect Speaker John Boehner, U.S. Rep. Barry Loudermilk, R–Cassville, said he did not expect the “intensity” of the backlash against his vote. 

Loudermilk denied flip-flopping on a campaign promise to elect new leadership, saying he voted against Boehner last November during a vote to determine the Republican nominee for speaker.

“Nobody stood up to challenge John Boehner [in November],” Loudermilk said. “Even without a challenge I cast a ‘no’ vote because I thought we needed something different. There’s no cameras there, so I had nothing to gain. It was not a grandstand. It was truly a principled vote that I thought we needed new leadership. [Tuesday] was not the time to have that fight — that was back in November.”

Loudermilk was one of the 216 votes that saw Boehner re-elected speaker Jan. 6. Twenty-five Republicans voted for other candidates or voted present. Runner-up Rep. Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., received 164 votes.

During his campaign, Loudermilk said he signed a pledge that he “would vote against the speaker at the earliest opportunity or the first opportunity to do so” — and he said he did. ...

That pledge wasn’t a “core principle” of his campaign, but it was mentioned, and many of his constituents have misconceptions about his Jan. 6 vote for Boehner, Loudermilk said Jan. 7. 

Loudermilk said he had no other choice but to vote for Boehner. ...

Loudermilk said his staff has been reading comments from Facebook and answering phones about the vote all day and he understands why some are blasting him for allegedly going back on his word.

“I truly understand why they’re upset. I’m upset that that’s the choice that I had to make yesterday,” Loudermilk said.

Kerwin Swint, a political science professor at Kennesaw State University, said the Loudermilk camp should not worry about the negative comments swarming this week; it will blow over soon.

“I think they did the only thing they could do under the circumstances, so I don’t think it will hurt him or any Republican at all down the line,” Swint said. ...


Boomers Striking Gold as YA Authors

Name of Publication: 
Next Avenue/Twin Cities Public Television
Excerpt of Article: 

By Stephen L. Antczak | January 12, YA (Young Adult) books are consistently among the biggest bestsellers. In Nielsen’s latest annual list of top-selling books, eight of the Top 10 titles in 2014 were YA, including No. 1: the paperback version of John Green’s The Fault in Our Stars. What you might not realize, though, is that many authors penning successful YA series aren’t young — they’re boomers.

 Suzanne Collins (the Hunger Games trilogy) is 52. Rick Riordan, creator of Percy Jackson and the Olympians, is 50. Chris Crutcher, author of Period 8Deadline and Angry Management, is 68. Roxanne Longstreet Conrad, who writes the popular Morganville Vampires series as Rachel Caine, is 52. ...

Bryan Gillis, Associate Professor of English Education and Literacy at Kennesaw State University and director of the upcoming 24th KSU Conference on Literature for Children and Young Adults doesn’t see a difference between YA writers of different generations.


“Good writers, regardless of when they were born, pull not only from past and present experiences but also from their imaginations,” says Gillis. “I don't believe that one's imagination or experiences are bound by a birthdate.”

Georgia Town is Case Study in Immigration Debate

Name of Publication: 
Wall Street Journal
Excerpt of Article: 

DALTON, Ga.— Charles Carmical doesn’t like President Barack Obama ’s politics and doesn’t endorse his recent move to enable millions of illegal immigrants to stay in the U.S. But, the furniture-store owner acknowledges, it might be good for his bottom line. 

“If these people make more money and feel stability, it will help my business,” said Mr. Carmical, standing in his Dalton Auctions showroom on South Dixie Highway.

Illegal immigration has changed the face of this northern Georgia town. Mexicans and Central Americans flocked here by the thousands in the 1990s to toil in the mills that earned Dalton the nickname “carpet capital of the world.” Now, the large concentration of undocumented people in this conservative corner of a conservative state will make it a powerful case study for the impact of Mr. Obama’s program as it rolls out in 2015. ...

As the immigrant population swelled, local schools established English language-learning programs. Soccer began to rival football in popularity. Many locals tried their first tacos and burritos as Mexican restaurants opened.

Some area residents were uneasy with the newcomers. But the reaction was more muted than might have been expected in such a conservative area, said Randall Patton, a Kennesaw State University historian who has published two books about the carpet industry. In a 2003 book, Mr. Patton quoted Shaw Industries’ executive Charles Parham, now deceased, saying, “The Hispanics have been a salvation of our carpet industry.” 

“Mill owners tend to be rock-ribbed Republicans, but business trumps politics,” Mr. Patton said. ...


White voters dominated Georgia’s election last month

Name of Publication: 
The Atlanta Journal-Constitution
Excerpt of Article: 

When aspiring politicians venture into journalism: 5 good questions with Andrew Pieper

Name of Publication: 
American Press Institute
Excerpt of Article: 


UPDATED 11/13/14 9:17 AM


By Jane Elizabeth at Api


What happens when students with an eye on careers as politicians and government officials enter the world of journalism?

This semester, students in political science professor Andrew Pieper’s class at Kennesaw State University stepped into roles as journalists as they produced “Truth Test,” a political fact-checking feature for CBS46 News in Atlanta. Pieper, who holds a Ph.D. from the University of Connecticut, talked about the lessons and challenges in covering the volatile Georgia races. ...

Nunn, Carter have political futures — should they choose to run again

Name of Publication: 
The Atlanta Journal-Constitution
Excerpt of Article: 

Posted: 4:59 p.m. Thursday, Nov. 6, 2014

By Aaron Gould Sheinin and Jeremy Redmon - The Atlanta Journal-Constitution

Jason Carter waded into his crowd of supporters gathered in an Atlanta hotel ballroom Tuesday after conceding defeat to Gov. Nathan Deal, hugged friends and posed for pictures.

One of his admirers shouted: “Four more years and you got it!” Carter smiled but didn’t take the bait. He also didn’t take questions from reporters then and hasn’t publicly spoken of his plans since. Nor has fellow Democrat Michelle Nunn, who lost to David Perdue in Georgia’s U.S. Senate race.

But they both would have a bright future in politics if they decide to run again, state Democratic leaders say. Both are young, well-educated and articulate candidates with strong political pedigrees. Carter is a grandson of former President Jimmy Carter. And Nunn is the daughter of former U.S. Sen. Sam Nunn. ...

Kerwin Swint, a Kennesaw State University political scientist, said a 2018 run for governor is possible for Carter.

“I always thought that this could be just a trial heat for him, like a warm-up act, and that 2018 might be an even better opportunity for him,” Swint said. “We might have a different environment by then, too. Obama will be gone. It will be an open seat.” ...

Experts try to make sense of gap between polls and vote in Georgia

Name of Publication: 
The Atlanta Journal-Constitution
Excerpt of Article: 

Posted: 4:59 p.m. Wednesday, Nov. 5, 2014

By Nancy Badertscher and Shannon McCaffrey - The Atlanta Journal-Constitution

There was one thing most polls seemed to agree on in the weeks leading up to Tuesday’s election — the two top races in Georgia were so excruciatingly close that both might have to be decided by runoffs.

But then the voters stepped in. Republicans won in a rout. It wasn’t a horse race — it was a political blowout.

There was one thing most polls seemed to agree on in the weeks leading up to Tuesday’s election — the two top races in Georgia were so excruciatingly close that both might have to be decided by runoffs.

But then the voters stepped in. Republicans won in a rout. It wasn’t a horse race — it was a political blowout.

Meanwhile, some earlier surveys were simply imprecise. They relied on automated calling and Internet surveys, cheaper methods scorned by more established pollsters.

“We have major polling problems (in Georgia),” said Kerwin Swint, chairman of the political science department at Kennesaw State University.

“No one here knows how to model turnout based on voting patterns, population, and issues.” ...

University System of Georgia honors Kennesaw State professor for teaching excellence

Pam Marek

Pam Marek among top teachers receiving 2014 Regents’ Award

KENNESAW, Ga.  (Oct. 22, 2014) — Kennesaw State University psychology professor Pam Marek is among three recipients of the University System of Georgia’s 2014 Regents’ Award for Excellence in Teaching, the state’s most prestigious honor for higher education teachers.

Marek will receive the Felton Jenkins Jr. Hall of Fame Faculty Award at a ceremony in March along with two other recipients of the teaching excellence award. She was recognized for her strengths in teaching and working with students in advisement, mentoring, and undergraduate research.  Her professional development and scholarship of teaching and learning were also cited. 

“This award is indeed a major milestone in my career and a further inspiration to continue my involvement in the scholarship of teaching and learning,” Marek said. “As a teacher, my overarching goals are to expand students’ minds in ways that encourage questioning and increase understanding of multiple perspectives in the context of a supportive, learner-centered environment. I also aim to reinforce and develop the reading, writing, and quantitative skills that are an integral part of higher education.” 

Marek earned her master’s and Ph.D. in cognitive psychology from the University of Florida. Prior to joining Kennesaw State’s faculty in 2005, she taught at St. Michael's College in Vermont and at Anderson College in South Carolina. She serves as an associate editor for Teaching of Psychology and regularly participates in presentations at teaching-related conferences, such as the National Institute on the Teaching of Psychology and the Southeastern Conference on the Teaching of Psychology.

In conjunction with students and colleagues, she has published research related to materialistic values, affluence cues, and the work ethic, in journals including Journal of Economic Psychology, Journal of Applied Social Psychology, Personality and Individual Differences, and Individual Differences Research. Sheis a member of the American Psychological Association, the Association for Psychological Science, and the Southeastern Psychological Association.

The USG annually presents Regents’ excellence awards to faculty members from among its 31 member institutions. In addition to the three 2014 teaching excellence awards, honors are also presented to two faculty members for excellence in the scholarship of teaching and learning and for online teaching excellence. An annual award also is presented to one outstanding program systemwide. Marek was among 30 faculty members nominated for the 2014 individual faculty awards.

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Kennesaw State University is the third-largest university in Georgia, offering more than 100 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 nearly 26,000 from 130 countries.


Kennesaw State Students Learn History, Significance of the Hijab

Name of Publication: 
GPB News
Excerpt of Article: 
Updated: 19 hours ago.

Students at Kennesaw State University spent two days last week learning about the history and significance of the Hijab. Students also had the chance to wear the Muslim headscarf. 

This was part of the school's Year of Arabian Peninsula program. The initiative aims to cultivate a deeper appreciation for and understanding of the history and cultures in that area through a series of events, lectures and activities. 

GPB's Rickey Bevington spoke with Kennesaw students Caitlin Syfrett, who helped lead the event, and Ferdos Hashem, who's the president of Kennesaw's Muslim Student Association. ...

Note: Story includes audio of  the interview

Cobb politicos: Holder controversial, partisan AG

Name of Publication: 
The Marietta Daily Journal
Excerpt of Article: 
by Ricky Leroux
September 27, 2014 04:00 AM | 1744 views |

MARIETTA — Cobb officials and politicos are mixed on the impact Attorney General Eric Holder has had on the country. Holder announced his resignation this week. 

Kerwin Swint, a political science professor at Kennesaw State University, said Holder has been more political in his responses to issues while in office than his predecessors, which has resulted in some criticism.

“I think he’s going to be looked at as a very partisan attorney general, someone who tried to help his president, Barack Obama, move forward on issues like gay rights, civil rights (and) voting rights. … But (he) encountered significant opposition and a fair amount of controversy,” Swint said. 

Swint said he’s not implying Holder has done anything inappropriate, just that he was more willing than most attorneys general to engage in politics.

“He’s been one of our more controversial attorneys general,” he said. “He’s had some successes; he’s had his share of politicized fights over issues, over process with Congress. I’m sure Republicans won’t miss him, but Democrats will, I’m sure.”

As Swint predicted, Cobb residents had very different opinions on Holder, depending on their party. ...


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