The Opportunity

Kennesaw State University (KSU) invites inquiries, nominations, and applications for the position of associate dean of students. This newly created position will oversee multiple areas within the dean of students office while implementing policies, practices and creative thought to support success and engagement of students at Kennesaw State University.

A leader in innovative teaching and learning, Kennesaw State University is one of the 50 largest public institutions in the country. KSU offers more than 150 undergraduate, graduate, and doctoral degrees to its more than 42,000 students. With 13 colleges on two metro Atlanta campuses, Kennesaw State is a member of the University System of Georgia and the second largest university in the state. The University’s vibrant campus culture, diverse population, strong global ties, entrepreneurial spirit, and Division I athletics draw students from throughout the region and from 126 countries across the globe. Ranked a top choice for students by U.S. News, 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.

The Position

Role of the Associate Dean of Students for Kennesaw State University

Reporting to the associate vice president and dean of students, the associate dean of students (ADOS) has primary responsibility for the administration, supervision, budget management, and daily oversight of all student life functions, units, and programs which include student activities, student organizations, student media, student center operations, and fraternity and sorority life, as well as the student conduct and academic integrity department. The associate dean will participate in the development and administering of policies related to crisis management and problem resolution, supporting students, families, and other individuals of concern within the university community. They will oversee planning for university-wide theme-week programming such as Homecoming and Week of Welcome, working collaboratively with multiple internal and external partners. The associate dean will participate in the activities of the Behavioral Response Team and oversee outreach activities with various on and off campus partners, including serving on various committees representing student life and/or the Office of the Dean of Students. They will represent Kennesaw State University on the University System of Georgia Regents Advisory Council for Student Life; produce reports and conduct periodic assessment of policies, protocols, and other related functions; and advise the Student Government Association (SGA) while also assisting SGA with coordination of duties, such as appointments to Student Activities Budget Advisory Committee and other university committees.

Additional responsibilities of the associate dean include the following.

  • coordinates accommodations for students involved in cases, including, but not limited to Title IX related concerns
  • oversees related protocols and processes, such as Administrative Emergency Withdrawals and Admission Reviews, supervises the efforts of the staff who support these processes
  • directs program calendar coordination, including integration of data management systems and marketing/promotional efforts related to Student Life units
  • provides strategic planning and on-going assessment initiatives related to Student Life units
  • develops, implements, maintains, and supports professional development and training for department staff
  • supports broader functions of the Office of the Dean of Students as needed, including assisting in case investigation and/or adjudication particularly related to organizational misconduct and/or appeals
  • maintains contact with Counseling and Psychological Services, University Police and Public Safety, Title IX, Office of Victim Services, Housing and Residence Life, Student Conduct and Academic Integrity, Provost’s office, Student Advocacy, Health Services, Disability Services, Legal Affairs, and external resources

History of the Position

This is a new position for Kennesaw State University. A re-visioning within the Dean of Students office combined two former assistant dean of students roles into a newly created associate dean of students position.

Opportunities and Challenges of the Role

The new associate dean of students must possess an understanding of best practices in student affairs. The ADOS should be a thought leader and capable of innovative creative solutions in working strategically with students, faculty, and staff. The ADOS will work with the associate vice president for student affairs/dean of students (AVP/DOS) to develop effective policies, protocols, and practice to support the strategic plan for the student affairs division.

Primary areas under the associate dean of students include the following.

  • administration, supervision, budget management, and daily oversight of all Student Life units, which include Student Activities, Student Organizations, Student Media, Student Center Operations, and Fraternity and Sorority Life
  • oversight and supervision of the department of Student Conduct and Academic Integrity
  • coordination of accommodations for students involved in cases, including, but not limited to Title IX related concerns
  • oversight of planning for university-wide theme week programming, such as Homecoming and Week of Welcome, working collaboratively with multiple internal and external partners
  • participation in the activities of the Behavioral Response Team (BRT)

Additional opportunities, priorities, and challenges for the associate dean of students as articulated by stakeholders are as follows.

  • The new ADOS should have experience in crisis management as they serve with the BRT and will lead the other initiatives for the AVP/DOS.
  • There is a strong culture of collaboration at Kennesaw State. The ADOS will need to build strong collegial relationships with key institutional leaders.
  • The ADOS will need to be a content expert on student development and areas that report to the position. It is important that they have relevant experience and/or past collaborations to draw upon in the areas of student activities, conduct, and fraternity/sorority life.
  • The new ADOS should have experience in policy development as it relates to student centered practices. They will need strong critical decision-making skills to address issues of concern.
  • There is a strong work ethic and positive energy within the dean of students’ staff due to a shared commitment to student success. The ADOS will find a peer group and colleagues who are welcoming, promote open communication, emphasize an orientation toward service, and share a desire for a progressive and forward-thinking professional.
  • The new ADOS will need to lead staff in strategic thinking that acknowledges the resources of the division. There is a desire for frank conversation as it relates to needs, issues, and challenges of the department, as well as a focus on current trends and best practices—and how they might be woven into the fabric of KSU.
  • As the ADOS transitions into the position, it will be important to develop a strong sense “team” among the staff and build working relationships that emphasize a collaborative work environment.

Measures of Success

At an appropriate interval after joining Kennesaw State University, the following will initially define success for the associate dean of students.

  • The associate dean of students has increased opportunities for student engagement and the development of new campus traditions.
  • The associate dean of students is a visible and engaged leader throughout campus, building bridges between students and administrators.
  • The associate dean of students has assessed the impact of programs and services within their areas of responsibility.
  • The associate dean of students is an essential team member and collaborator with faculty, staff, and students who are working towards achievement of departmental, divisional, and institutional goals.
  • The associate dean of students has analyzed, contributed to, and defined plans that are best practices for the division and the campus moving forward.
  • The associate dean of students has contributed to policy evaluation, creation, and education for the campus community.
  • The associate dean of students has expanded the professional development and mentoring of staff within the department.

Qualifications

Qualifications and Characteristics

The successful candidate must possess a master’s degree in higher education, student affairs, or a related field, and a minimum of five years of progressively responsible administration or management experience in a college or university setting; seven or more years of experience and a terminal degree are preferred. Additional preferred experiences and skills include: problem resolution in a higher education setting and understanding of student development theories; creation of student life policies and procedures; and oversight for student life functions within a public institution of higher education.

The successful candidate will demonstrate a personal and professional commitment to diversity and inclusion, the ability to work collaboratively across the campus, and the aptitude to build and maintain strong relationships with students, with an emphasis on dynamic communication and collaboration. Other preferred qualifications include supervisory and budgetary experience; planning/organizational skills; experience leading teams and managing crises; and strategic visioning skills.

Other desired knowledge, skills, and abilities for this position include the following.

  • knowledge of university resources and support systems, along with relevant legal/policy issues to assess, refer, evaluate, and interpret complex circumstances
  • demonstrated success in planning, coordinating, and completing large scale, detail-oriented projects, programs, and initiatives, including policy and procedure review/development
  • ability to strategically and sensitively convey difficult information and determine outcome options with an eye toward maximizing educational opportunities consistent with university philosophy
  • ability to multitask and be flexible and adaptable in a fast-paced work environment
  • excellent interpersonal, initiative, teamwork, problem solving, independent judgment, organization, communication (verbal and written), time management, project management, and presentation skills
  • strong supervision, strategic planning, and follow up skills
  • ability to handle multiple tasks or projects
  • proficient with computer applications and programs associated with the position
  • strong attention to detail
  • ability to work a variable schedule, including evening and weekend hours
  • strong customer service skills and phone and e-mail etiquette

Institution & Location

Overview of the Office of the Dean of Students

The office of the dean of students oversees all student conduct, problem resolution, behavioral and crisis response, administrative emergency withdrawals, policy review and compliance, and student advocacy and support. In addition, the dean of students collaborates across all areas and constituents within the greater university community to enhance the student experience. This includes not only service to students but also collaborations with parents, alumni, community members, faculty, staff, and campus administrators.

A unique feature of the dean of students office is its collaboration with academic affairs in involving students in the democratic process. KSU is proud to be one of the founding institutions of the American Democracy Project (ADP). Now at more than 240 campuses, ADP strives to prepare students to be informed, engaged citizens who are active participants in democratic decision-making. With University College serving as its base, ADP plans and implements the annual Constitution Week festivities, Pathways to Peace lecture series, and a variety of events, activities, and advocacy opportunities.

Recognizing the importance of civic rights and responsibilities, the office of the dean of students coordinates nonpartisan efforts to simplify local voter registration and participation, emphasizing the many advantages to registering locally and getting involved in the greater Kennesaw and Cobb County community, even for students already registered at home addresses.

In addition to the University’s commitment on campus and in the local community, Kennesaw State University is a national leader in civic learning and democratic engagement. KSU was selected in 2012 by the National Association of Student Personnel Administrators (NASPA), the leading organization for student affairs administrators in higher education worldwide, as a founding lead institution in an exciting new network focused on making civic learning and democratic engagement a part of every student’s college experience. KSU was among the first 25 institutions selected from across the country, and the network quickly expanded to 50 institutions during the first year. Into the second year of the program, the network expanded to 73 schools, with KSU serving as the sole institution in Georgia included in this national initiative.

https://deanofstudents.kennesaw.edu/

Overview of the Division of Student Affairs

The division of student affairs oversees twenty-one departments and centers, including the office of the dean of students.

Mission

Kennesaw State University’s Division of Student Affairs prepares students for their future by fostering learning beyond the classroom through innovative and transformative experiences.

The Division of Student Affairs supports students and enhances their collegiate experiences by complementing academic pursuits with transformative living, learning, and leading opportunities. The Division of Student Affairs fosters inclusive and welcoming campus communities that contribute to students’ holistic development and empower them to be engaged and ethical citizens.

Values

The division of student affairs embraces the following values:

  • We will be honest, authentic and trustworthy at all times.
  • We will create and maintain a diverse community of learners that appreciates openness, equity, and equality.
  • We will enhance on- and off-campus engagement opportunities by strengthening relationships and creating shared experiences.
  • We will create a dynamic environment that nurtures students’ curiosity for self-exploration and lifelong learning.
  • We will foster awareness and appreciation of our commonalities and differences through meaningful dialogue and thoughtful action.

Learning and Development Outcomes

The division of student affairs offers out-of-class programs, services, co-curricular programming and individual interaction to ensure students are achieving the following learning and development outcomes.

  • Knowledge acquisition, integration, construction, and application
  • Cognitive complexity
  • Intrapersonal development
  • Interpersonal competence
  • Humanitarianism and civic engagement
  • Practical competence

By keeping students engaged with the campus, the division of student affairs ensures students will be more successful academically, more likely to remain and graduate, and will possess a diverse portfolio of skills critical to success after college.

https://studentaffairs.kennesaw.edu/index.php

Leadership of the Division of Student Affairs

Eric Arneson, Vice President for Student Affairs

As the vice president for student affairs, Dr. Arneson provides leadership and direction for much of the co-curricular student experience at KSU. He serves as the chief student advocate and expert on campus and provides direct counsel to Interim President Schwaig and other key leaders in championing student success. Arneson fosters student engagement and success by oversight of divisional departments: Dean of Students, Cultural and Community Centers, Counseling and Psychological Services, Fraternity and Sorority Life, Student-Athlete Support Services, Sports and Recreation, CARE Services, Center for Young Adult Addiction and Recovery, Military and Veteran Services, Parent and Family Programs, Student Leadership and Services, among other areas all dedicated to creating engaging, inclusive and supportive communities for students.

Arneson joined KSU in 2020 after serving as the vice chancellor for student affairs and campus climate at the University of Wisconsin-Green Bay. He previously worked in high-level student affairs positions at Florida International University, University of Miami, University of Illinois, and others. He has been very involved in professional associations in leadership positions and has facilitated workshops and trainings nationally on student affairs related topics such as leadership development, communication, creating inclusive communities, and navigating career progression. He is recognized as an expert in student affairs and student engagement.

Arneson holds a doctorate in higher education from Florida International University, a Master of Arts in College Student Personnel from Bowling Green State University, and a Bachelor of Science in Political Science from the University of Wisconsin-La Crosse.

https://studentaffairs.kennesaw.edu/index.php

Ronald Briggs, Associate VP of Student Affairs & Dean of Students

As Associate Vice President of Student Affairs and Dean of Students, Dr. Briggs assist in the leadership and direction of the co-curricular student experience at KSU. He serves as a student advocate and provides counsel to the Vice President for Student Affairs, Dr. Eric Arneson, and partners with others in the fostering of student success. Dr. Briggs’ oversight of divisional departments consists of the Office of the Dean of Students, CARE Services, Parent and Family Programs, Student Advocacy, Student Conduct and Academic Integrity, Student Disability Services, and the Student Government Association.

Dr. Briggs joined KSU in August of 2020. Prior to joining KSU, Dr. Briggs served at Arizona State University as the senior director of residential life where he assisted students in their transition into college and beyond. Dr. Briggs has experience working in student development, organizational development, federal compliance, crisis intervention, and management. Dr. Briggs also worked in residence life at Morehouse College, in metro Atlanta.

Dr. Briggs holds a doctorate in higher education from Arizona State University, a Master of Education in higher education from the University of Toledo, and Bachelor of Science in Mechanical Engineering Technology from the University of Toledo.

https://deanofstudents.kennesaw.edu/about.php

Institutional Overview

Institutional background/history

A leader in innovative teaching and learning, Kennesaw State University offers undergraduate, graduate and doctoral degrees to its more than 42,000 students. With 13 colleges on two metro Atlanta campuses, Kennesaw State is a member of the University System of Georgia and the second-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 126 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.

Kennesaw, GA

1830’s:  Kennesaw’s history begins when the Georgia Legislature authorized the construction of a rail line through Cobb County. Known as the Western and Atlantic Railroad, its 20 miles of track stretched from Terminus (Atlanta) to Cartersville by 1846. Several small towns were founded along the railroad including Vinings, Smyrna, Acworth, and Big Shanty. The abundance of water and high ground adjacent to the railroad led to the construction of worker’s shanties near present day Kennesaw. This area became known as “Big Shanty Grade”. The high point of the railroad between the Chattahoochee and Etowah Rivers is the present day crossing in Kennesaw.

Late 1850’s:  A plot of land was acquired by the Railroad “for the purpose of erecting a Depot and an eating house for the convenience of the traveling public.” This eating place became the famous Lacy House and was operated by Mr. and Mrs. George Lacy.

1861:  Camp McDonald, a training camp for soldiers, was established near Big Shanty. Named for former Governor Charles C. McDonald, Big Shanty was an ideal location for a training camp. There was fresh water available, and the railroad furnished a convenient mode of transportation for recruits and supplies. There were no permanent structures, and the men lived in tents. General William Phillips of the Georgia Militia was the commander of the camp. The parade ground was located approximately where Highway 41 crosses Kennesaw Due West Road. On July 31, 1861 a Grand Review of the troops was held in the town and attracted a large crowd. Such a crowd would not gather again until one hundred years later when The General returned to Kennesaw.

To read more of the history of Kennesaw: https://www.kennesaw-ga.gov/our-history/

https://www.kennesaw.edu/about/index.php

Mission and Vision

2018-2023 Strategic Plan

Exemplifying the power and promise of a student-centered, research-driven university

A leader in innovative teaching and learning, Kennesaw State University offers undergraduate, graduate, and doctoral degrees to its more than 42,000 students. With 13 colleges on two metro Atlanta campuses, Kennesaw State is a member of the University System of Georgia and the second-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 126 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. KSU places a high value on both excellent teaching and insightful, pragmatic research. Kennesaw State nurtures strong relationships in its civic, academic, and economic communities. The faculty and staff are committed to the success of Kennesaw State University and its students.

To read more: https://planning.kennesaw.edu/index.php

Kathy Schwaig, Interim President

Dr. Kathy ‘Kat’ Schwaig began as interim president of Kennesaw State University July 1, 2021. Immediately prior to this role, she served as the University’s provost and senior vice president for academic affairs.

As provost, Dr. Schwaig prioritized efforts that supported student success, including increasing the number of faculty and advisors and eliminating roadblocks to graduation. She worked collaboratively with the campus community to grow the University’s undergraduate and graduate programs, while supporting the Office of Research’s efforts to expand faculty research across the academic colleges. Dr. Schwaig also played a pivotal role in leading the University through the events related to the Covid-19 pandemic, including a return to campus in Fall 2021.

Dr. Schwaig previously served as the Dinos Eminent Scholar Chair of Entrepreneurial Management, as well as the dean of KSU’s Michael J. Coles College of Business, a position she held from 2012 to 2019. She has held several other leadership roles at KSU, including interim and associate dean, interim department chair for the Department of Accounting, and interim department chair for the Department of Computer Science and Information Systems. Dr. Schwaig joined the faculty at KSU in 2002 as an associate professor of information systems. Prior to joining KSU, Dr. Schwaig held faculty positions at Georgia State University and Baylor University.

Dr. Schwaig’s research focused on information privacy and policy formulation and has been published in some of the leading journals in the information systems field.

She has received the Oscar Burnett Award for Distinguished Achievement in Business from the Morris Brown College Foundation, the Cobb Executive Women’s Glass Ceiling Award, and Atlanta Magazine’s Women Making a Mark Award.

A native of central Texas, Dr. Schwaig earned a BBA in Accounting and an MBA in Information Systems from Baylor University, a Master of Liberal Arts from Johns Hopkins University, and a PhD in Management Information Systems from the University of South Carolina.

https://president.kennesaw.edu/index.php

Academic Programs

KSU offers more than 90 undergraduate degrees and more than 75 graduate degrees in a vast array of fields. Finishing high school is a significant milestone in everyone’s education but earning a bachelor’s degree puts students on the path to higher earnings, stable employment, and job stability.

Earning a bachelor’s degree is essential not only at the beginning of a student’s career but also into retirement. First, a bachelor’s will help the student obtain employment over someone with a high school diploma or associate degree. Secondly, on an annual basis, bachelor’s degree holders earn about $32,000 more than those whose highest degree is a high school diploma, according to the Lumina Foundation. Lastly, those individuals with bachelor’s degrees are more likely to weather economic downturns than those without the degree.

Academic Units

  • Bagwell College of Education
  • Coles College of Business
  • College of Architecture and Construction Management
  • College of Computing and Software Engineering
  • College of Graduate and Professional Education
  • Norman J. Radow College of Humanities and Social Sciences
  • College of Science and Mathematics
  • College of the Arts
  • KSU Journey Honors College
  • Southern Polytechnic College of Engineering & Engineering Technology
  • Wellstar College of Health and Human Services

https://www.kennesaw.edu/bachelor-degrees/

The Enrollment Profile

For more information on Kennesaw’s enrollment:

https://ir.kennesaw.edu/facts-figures/enrollment_profile.php

Rankings

U.S. News and World Report

  • Ranked among the top public universities and 20th nationally in “National Universities Where Most Accepted Students Enroll” (admissions yield rate)
  • Ranked among National Universities in “2021 Best Colleges”
  • Best Undergraduate Engineering programs (top 100 nationally among schools with bachelor’s and master’s-level engineering degree programs)
  • Best Online MBA program (94th among programs nationally, 4th in Georgia)
  • Best Online Graduate Information Technology program (among top 75 nationally, 2nd in Georgia)
  • Best Online Graduate Engineering programs (ranked among top 100 in nation, only Georgia institution named)

American Council of Trustees and Alumni

  • An “A” rating for high-quality core curriculum (11th consecutive year named, one of top 24 colleges nationally)

Princeton Review

  • Top 50 Online MBA Programs (29th nationally)
  • Top 50 Game Design Programs for Undergrads (37th nationally)
  • Guide to Green Colleges: 2021 Edition (named among 416 colleges nationally)

Billboard

  • Top Music Business Schools (named among 28 nationally)

BestColleges.com

Best Online Bachelor’s Degree Programs in:

  • Geography (ranked 4th in nation)
  • Cybersecurity (ranked 7th in nation)
  • Information Technology (ranked 10th in nation)

https://www.kennesaw.edu/about/rankings.php

Benefits Overview

  • Medical plans
  • Dental plans
  • Vision plans
  • Life insurance
  • Flexible Spending Accounts
  • Critical Illness Plan
  • Hospital Indemnity Plan
  • Employee Assistance Program
  • Disability Plans
  • Retirement Plans

For more information: https://hr.kennesaw.edu/benefits/usg%20accidental%20plan.php

Application & Nomination

Review of applications will begin October 26, 2021 and continue until the position is filled. To apply for this position please click on the Apply button, complete the brief application process, and upload your resume and position-specific cover letter. Nominations for this position may be emailed to Laura Puckett-Boler at lpb@spelmanjohnson.com. Applicants needing reasonable accommodation to participate in the application process should contact Spelman Johnson at 413-529-2895.

Visit the Kennesaw State University website at www.kennesaw.edu

Kennesaw State University is an affirmative action and equal opportunity employer. All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, gender expression, national origin, age, protected veteran or disabled status, or genetic information.