Fall Semester 2020: The Countdown Begins


Five months – that’s how long it has been since KSU students have been on the Marietta and Kennesaw campuses. Much has happened in those five months. More than 5,000 students have graduated since last March. More than 20,000 students – a record number – enrolled in the 2020 summer term.

Five days – that’s how long we have before KSU students begin classes for the Fall 2020 semester. Many things will be different from a traditional semester, yet it is the only Fall 2020 college experience our students will have. We are committed to doing all that we can to keep students safe and provide them with intellectual engagement and pivotal interactions that define the college experience.

We are gearing up now for the initial days of the semester. Starting tomorrow, we begin moving students back into the residence halls on the Kennesaw Campus and then later this week on the Marietta Campus. Our move-in process has been scheduled over several days to ensure the safety of our residents and their families. For more information about our move-in safety protocols please click here.

Students living on campus will also have the opportunity to engage with one another through events like virtual bingo, a virtual scavenger hunt and virtual trivia night, as well as a number of outdoor activities where students can safely social distance from one another. Again, our team has worked diligently to prioritize the health and safety of our students within our residential communities. Please click here for more information.

For our first-year students, the fall semester will kick off with a new twist on our traditional First-Year Convocation. KSU Live: First-Year Edition is a virtual welcome for incoming students and will feature a look at some of KSU’s most valuable resources, college-life tips from returning students, important information about our COVID-19 precautions and welcoming remarks from our faculty and staff. Join us for a live stream Sunday, August 16 at 4 p.m. on YouTube.

On Monday, August 17 the action really begins when classes – both face-to-face and online – are launched. To celebrate the new semester, we will host our annual welcome back traditions including First Day of School Cake (this year we will switch to individually-wrapped, themed cookies) and Week of Welcome. This year’s Week of Welcome will consist of primarily virtual events, but they will still help get the semester started off right with events such as virtual first day of school pictures, virtual movie night and the annual Stuff-An-Owl event. Click here for our full Week of Welcome schedule.

Finally, we have added a number of new protocols to help protect the health and safety of everyone. In addition to signage throughout campus to remind everyone to wear a face covering and to maintain social distance, our staff and students have worked diligently to configure every classroom on campus to comply with social distancing requirements. A number of measures designed to limit class size – shifting classes to larger areas and encouraging hybrid remote and face-to-face instruction – have been implemented to help students attend KSU safely. There are also many new outdoor spaces added to help them study and learn safely and comfortably during the semester.

For the latest information about the efforts to maintain the health and safety of the campus community, visit the KSU coronavirus information website at https://coronavirus.kennesaw.edu.

As we begin the new semester, remember that you are all what makes Kennesaw State so special. And while the circumstances of returning to campus are unusual this year to say the least, everyone at KSU remains dedicated to providing the best educational experience we can, while working hard to keep the community safe. I encourage all to enhance everyone’s experience this semester by practicing patience and kindness with one another. Welcome to Owl Nation!

Pamela Whitten


Written By Whitten