Deans make meaningful impact through scholarships

KENNESAW, Ga. | Dec 5, 2023

Deans Katie Kaukinen and Karen Kornweibel invest in student success by endowing scholarships at KSU

Dr. Katie Kaukinen began her career at Kennesaw State as dean of the Norman J. Radow College of Humanities and Social Sciences in January 2022. In July 2022, Dr. Karen Kornweibel joined the KSU community as dean of the Keeping Sights Upward (KSU) Journey Honors College.

By engaging with students over the past year, both Kaukinen and Kornweibel have witnessed first-hand the power of and need for scholarship support at KSU, inspiring them to give back to students in their respective colleges.

In memory of her father, Kaukinen committed $25,000 to establish the Gary K. Kaukinen Memorial Scholarship. The scholarship will provide financial support to first-generation students majoring in history education.

"My father adored history," explained Kaukinen. "He taught for more than 30 years and worked hard to ensure that his students understood that a knowledge of history could help them understand the events of the past and shape the future."

Dr. Katie Kaukinen

In addition to honoring her father's memory, Kaukinen said she was motivated to establish the scholarship to provide some financial relief to students in her college.

"The students at KSU are different," she said. "We are serving students who have greater financial need than other institutions. But our students are innovative – they are creative in figuring out how to get here and stay here. They'll do whatever it takes to see their academic careers through to graduation."

Dr. Karen Kornweibel

This sentiment was echoed by Kornweibel, who committed $25,000 to establish a scholarship in memory of her mother.

"There's still quite a bit of need for scholarship support at KSU," Kornweibel said. "I've seen the power of being able to give scholarships to students and how it can transform not only their lives but the lives of their families."

The Gladys Anne Kornweibel Memorial Scholarship will provide support to undergraduate students in the KSU Journey Honors College who exhibit financial need.

"My mother was an amazing woman who saw the best in everyone. She made everyone feel like they have value," said Kornweibel. "My hope is that I make people feel the same."

"It Is an inspiration to work with academic leaders like Katie and Karen," said Lance Burchett, VP of Advancement and CEO of the KSU Foundation, Inc. "There is no question about their commitment to our students and their passion for the future of KSU."

Looking to the future, Kaukinen and Kornweibel expressed a desire to make the college experience more accessible to the students they serve at KSU.

"I hope this scholarship can be the little bit of support to take some pressure off our students," said Kornweibel. "I want our students to be able to take advantage of the opportunities to study abroad, pursue internships and participate in interdisciplinary research."

– By Elyssa Reed

Related Posts