“Next Generation Scholars in First-Year Studies”

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Case Statement

Following years of unprecedented growth, Kennesaw State University is stronger today than at any time in its history. At the forefront of this strength are our nationally recognized first-year initiatives—featured in U.S News & World Reports’ “America’s Best Colleges” listing for more than a decade.

Compelled by this strong momentum, Kennesaw State seeks to ensure its continued progress into the future by fostering the next generation of scholars, those who will not accept the status quo but who seek to affect the way students learn, manage, and succeed during their first year of college.

Imagine students as professors and administrators who have not only an in-depth knowledge of their formal disciplines but also the capacity to change those disciplines in ways previously unimagined. Preparing educators to teach first-year college students has traditionally been embedded in conventional disciplines such as science, English, math, and history but just imagine students graduating with the unique ability to teach the principles used to improve graduation outcomes through documented transitional experiences and research.

In fall 2015, Kennesaw State University will offer an online graduate degree program in First-Year Studies, the first of its kind in the country. The M.S. in First-Year Studies degree will equip students with the knowledge of the transitions first-year students face to prepare them to design, manage, deliver, and assess both curricular and co-curricular programs to help them succeed. This graduate program is intentionally designed to enhance the education of the next generation of student affairs professionals and faculty members.

KSU is excited about the future and ensuring student success. However, an increasing number of students are faced with taking on additional college debt to pursue postgraduate education. According to the U.S. Department of Education, tuition has increased more than 72 percent since year 2000. To offset these financial challenges, University College has developed the “Next Generation of First-Year Scholars” scholarship fund to provide financial support for students accepted into the M.S. in First-Year Studies program.

University College is committed to providing the best possible education. We invite you to join us as we ensure the ability to meet the opportunities ahead. We are confident that with your support, our dedicated faculty and staff members will equip tomorrow’s faculty and staff members to create and grow curricular and co-curricular initiatives that contribute to first-year student success.

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