KSU researchers to develop a documentary on women presidents in higher education

Funded by a grant from the Phi Kappa Phi honor society‚ Dean Mary Lou Frank and Assistant Professor Anne Hicks−Coolick will begin making a documentary this summer to honor the work of female college and university presidents in Georgia.

Georgia (Sep 18, 2002) — Funded by a grant from the Phi Kappa Phi honor society‚ Dean Mary Lou Frank and Assistant Professor Anne Hicks−Coolick will begin making a documentary this summer to honor the work of female college and university presidents in Georgia.



"These women have taken uphill journeys that virtually were uncharted 30 years ago‚" Frank said. "Their voices need to be recorded and studied to document their accomplishments‚ as well as to understand their leadership styles‚ chronicle their development as presidents and create a model for other women who aspire to leadership in higher education."



As president of the Georgia Association for Women in Higher Education‚ Frank recently met with Hicks−Coolick to discuss ideas for the association’s annual conference. From those discussions‚ the documentary‚ "Leadership‚ Vision and Excellence: A Study of Women Presidents in Higher Education‚" was born.



Frank is dean of undergraduate studies and general education at Kennesaw State University; Hicks−Coolick serves as director of the Center for Nonprofit and Public Leadership and is an assistant professor of social work.



"The numbers of women presidents are not on the rise‚ they’re on the decline‚" Frank said. "Even though 16 to 18 percent of college and university presidents are female‚ the majority of them are at the helm of two−year schools. Our gains are not quite as large as what they may seem."



The pilot study of women presidents of colleges and universities in Georgia will include an initial documentary of six of the 15 women presidents in Georgia‚ including KSU President Betty L. Siegel‚ and a scholarly article describing the content of the interviews.



The researchers hope to use the prototype documentary‚ which is being produced in collaboration with Georgia Public Broadcasting‚ in requesting further funding to expand the documentary to all women presidents in Georgia. Their long−term goal is to work with National Public Broadcasting in taping a documentary of all women college and university presidents in the United States.



"This will be a historical artifact for scholars in women’s studies‚" Frank said. "A leadership model will be developed that will take into account the uniqueness of women’s leadership styles in university settings‚ and this model will serve as a guide for other women who aspire to administration in higher education."





A leader in innovative teaching and learning, Kennesaw State University offers more than 150 undergraduate, graduate and doctoral degrees to its approximately 38,000 students. With 13 colleges on two metro Atlanta campuses, Kennesaw State is a member of the University System of Georgia and the third-largest university in the state. The university’s vibrant campus culture, diverse population, strong global ties and entrepreneurial spirit draw students from throughout the region and from 92 countries across the globe. Kennesaw State is a Carnegie-designated doctoral research institution (R2), placing it among an elite group of only 6 percent of U.S. colleges and universities with an R1 or R2 status, and one of the 50 largest public institutions in the country. For more information, visit kennesaw.edu.

©