Putting Students First
During my first months as president, students have been so generous with their time and openness in sharing ideas for improving their experience at KSU. Faculty and staff are committed to making sure students are the center of the universe at Kennesaw State. This is a complex organization with financial and space challenges that impact all large, public universities, and we are grateful for our students’ patience as we work to design and implement enhancements. Yet, we are also mindful that we need to have a sense of urgency in doing what we can to strengthen the student experience immediately. As a result, several initiatives are being designed and implemented.
First, we recognize that we must make it easier for students to enroll in the classes they need in a timely manner. This fall we implemented university-wide wait lists as students enrolled for their spring 2019 classes. With the data this provided, we have added around 80 new course sections for the spring, opening up approximately 2,500 new seats. This will not fix all class shortages overnight, but it is a first step in our new emphasis on student access.
Second, in recognition that the vast majority of students who graduate in six years or less accomplish this goal with coursework in one or more summers, we are adding new course sections for the summer. All deans have been instructed to make this growth a priority for their individual colleges. Students should see more options and availability when registering for summer classes. I encourage all students to seriously consider taking summer courses or participating in for-credit internships during the summer to make the most of their time with Kennesaw State. This action can help students begin their careers sooner and increase their immediate and lifetime earnings as a result.
Third, we want to meet student needs for study space. Learning never ceases, and sometimes neither does studying. Students have made clear the need for a secure, convenient and reliable place to study at all hours. In January, we will be opening two 24/7 study spaces. On the Marietta Campus, the "Marietta Study" will be located in the Community Center near the Courtyard Community and the Housing office. On the Kennesaw Campus, the "Kennesaw Study" will be located in the northeast portion of the Commons Dining Hall, close to the Central Deck, and will remain open when the Commons is otherwise closed. Both locations will include refreshments and require card access, with the Kennesaw Study utilizing a new entrance toward the back of the Commons building from 8 p.m. until 8 a.m.
It is our privilege to serve the nation’s finest students. I look forward to working with faculty, staff, students and the rest of the KSU community to continue to find ways to improve the overall student experience.