Why consolidate campuses?
As part of a statewide effort to increase college completion and to make post- secondary education more accessible to all Georgians, it is in the best interest of the students of this state to consolidate Southern Polytechnic and Kennesaw State Universities. Combined, the new university will be home to over 31,000 students, third behind the University of Georgia and Georgia State University.
With the focus always returning to the welfare of its students, the purpose of the System is to provide a network of institutions that offer a range of needed degrees for 21st century demands as well as innovative opportunities in research and service to students and faculty.
Consolidating these institutions will increase educational opportunities, increase administrative efficiencies, and improve overall effectiveness. Consolidation will overall make the system a better system. This consolidation:
- Increases the number of baccalaureate and graduate offerings to meet the workforce needs of the state
- Creates a larger institution of over 31,000 students
- Allows for seamless transfer between an already existing pipeline - #1 transfer choice of students who transfer out of So Poly.
- Given the proximity of these two institutions, avoids duplication of both academic programs and student services
- Builds on strong foundation of collaboration and partnership that already exists.
Will any campuses be closed?
Why these campuses and not others?
The proposed consolidation will enhance educational opportunities for students attending Southern Poly and Kennesaw. The consolidation will increase degree offerings, enhance educational attainment rates, expand distance learning options, and provide economies of scale by creating a larger institution which can provide greater service level to students. It will also build on existing partnerships or relationships.
How much money will be saved?
Reducing administrative costs and functions is a goal of consolidating institutions but it will not be a quick process. It is anticipated that it will take at least a 12-18 months to implement the consolidation of the Southern Poly and Kennesaw and properly calculate savings attained by the action.
Savings will occur from decreased administrative costs and increased service efficiencies. Realized savings will be redirected for instructional purposes.
Will there be layoffs?
A decrease in the number of jobs will likely occur but until details are worked out it is not possible to know how many or which ones. Certain administrative functions will be combined resulting in the need for fewer positions over time.
When will the consolidations go into effect?
We will immediately begin consolidating the universities. The timeline calls for approval of the plan to consolidate by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools (SACS) in Dec. 2014, followed by Board of Regents approval of the new institution in Jan. 2015. The target date for full integration is fall of 2015.
What happens next?
The Board is asked to approve the proposed consolidation at the November 2013 board meeting. If approved, the staff will begin implementation immediately.
How will this be done?
The process will be transparent and will heavily involve each campus but final approval of all decisions will reside with the Board. Institutional implementation committees will be formed which will include representatives of faculty, staff and administration. It is expected that the majority of decisions will be made at the institutional level subject to final approval by the Board. Regents’ staff will provide overall leadership to the implementation effort but expect the campus committee to be heavily engaged in identifying and recommending the resolutions for key issues. The committee will be formed and begin work immediately.
What will the new school be called? What about mascots, school colors, etc.?
The new institution will be Kennesaw State University and will carry forward the KSU mascot and school colors. Dan Papp will be the president. President Rossbacher will be vital to the consolidation. Other issues will take several months to address. The Board of Regents has final authority for all decisions.