Harnisch awarded honorary doctorate

Ruth Ann Harnisch, a philanthropist whose foundation has supported cutting-edge approaches to…

Georgia (May 23, 2012) — Ruth Ann Harnisch, a philanthropist whose foundation has supported cutting-edge approaches to gathering and disseminating news was presented an honorary doctorate ─ the 14th awarded in Kennesaw State’s 49-year history ─ during spring commencement exercises for the College of Humanities and Social Sciences.

            “Kennesaw State University is pleased to award this honorary doctorate to Ms. Harnisch,” said Kennesaw State President Daniel S. Papp.  “In so doing, we are recognizing the outstanding accomplishments of an exceptional person, known nationally as a philanthropist who truly has made a difference, as well as a ground-breaking journalist.”

            Harnisch, a former print and broadcasting journalist, is president of the New York-based Harnisch Foundation, which in 2009 awarded $1.5 million to establish the Center for Sustainable Journalism at Kennesaw State.

             “While I am pleased to receive the honorary doctorate, Kennesaw State’s innovative, cutting-edge experiments in new ways of delivering high-quality information are what is important and what I hope everyone will notice,” Harnisch said. “The Center for Sustainable Journalism is making strides as a leader in a thoughtful conversation that is important for our nation to have about juvenile justice.”

            Ten earned doctorates were also awarded.

            Nine students from the Michael J. Coles College of Business made KSU history as the first recipients of Doctor of Business Administration (DBA) degrees. The DBA program, tailored for working executives with extensive business experience who want to pursue an academic career, was launched in 2009. Six of the new doctors have already accepted faculty positions at business schools across the country.

            Rebecca Green, a middle school nurse from south Georgia, was awarded the first Doctor of Nursing Science (DNS) degree from the WellStar College of Health & Human Services. She said her dissertation on cultural conflicts that may exist between patients and providers revealed that issues that health care professionals believe are the most important are not nearly so relevant to patients.

            “Our graduates will be the most relevant new doctoral graduates in the country,” Neal Mero, executive director of the DBA program says. “Through their teaching and research, they will leave a lasting legacy of the kind of impact the Kennesaw State DBA program can have.”





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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