KSU aims for premier status

  Sitting in his office with a panoramic view of the campus, President Papp reels off a number…

Georgia (Sep 22, 2010) —  


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Sitting in his office with a panoramic view of the campus, President Papp reels off a number of hallmark moments in the school’s history and its recent academic successes. Notably, he cites decisions to increase the number of available graduate degrees as well as the transition about seven years ago from a full commuter campus to a more residential campus with dorms, a determination Papp credits to his predecessor, Betty Siegel.

Since the school opened in 1963 as two-year Kennesaw Junior College, it has grown into the fourth-largest school (22,389 enrolled in fall of 2009) in the state’s university system, behind the University of Georgia (34,885), Georgia State University (30,427) and Georgia Perimeter College (24,549).

Adjunct professor Yvonne Wichman likens KSU’s evolution to raising a child.

“You watch all these stages of a child, when he learns to walk and crawl, from newborn to full-grown,” said Wichman, the immediate past alumni association president and a 1993 and 1999 KSU graduate. Her ex-husband attended the school in 1969, when it was a two-year school of only five buildings. “It’s just been so miraculous to watch, almost like the process a mother goes through.”

In August, KSU was among 23 schools recognized for its first-year experience program for new students by U.S. News and World Report. Also in August, the school opened a $56 million health sciences building housing KSU’s Wellstar College of Health and Human Services. The first doctoral program was approved in March. And a state-of-the-art dining hall, The Commons, opened just over a year ago.


A leader in innovative teaching and learning, Kennesaw State University offers undergraduate, graduate and doctoral degrees to its nearly 43,000 students. With 11 colleges on two metro Atlanta campuses, Kennesaw State is a member of the University System of Georgia. The university’s vibrant campus culture, diverse population, strong global ties and entrepreneurial spirit draw students from throughout the country and the world. 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. For more information, visit kennesaw.edu