KENNESAW, Ga. | Mar 15, 2022
The Board of Regents of the University System of Georgia (USG) today named Dr. Kathy “Kat” Schwaig president of Kennesaw State University (KSU), effective March 16.
Schwaig currently serves as KSU’s interim president.
“Kennesaw State has a strong advocate and leader in Dr. Schwaig, and there is no question about the passion she has for the university and its students, faculty and staff,” USG Acting Chancellor Teresa MacCartney said. “As a longtime member of the KSU community, she has been a major part of its journey to become a force for student success in higher education, and I congratulate her on being named president of the institution she loves.”
During her eight months as interim president, Schwaig has focused on student-centered policies and practices aimed at improving retention, progression and graduation rates. This includes creating the Student Success Steering Committee, which works to coordinate and improve student success initiatives at a university that currently offers over 165 undergraduate, graduate and doctoral degrees and serves just under 43,000 students.
Among her accomplishments as interim president, Schwaig created a new campus communication structure, successfully engaged with donors to raise money for scholarships, coordinated strategic and tactical planning for campus and athletic facilities and expanded the university’s overall strategic framework, the R2 Roadmap, by adding a new focus to build engagement both on-campus and with community and business partners.
“There is no question that Kennesaw State University has an extraordinary story and a promising future, and I’m honored the board has confidence in me to keep that story moving forward,” Schwaig said. “My highest priority has been to support faculty and staff in making KSU a student-centered university, and the university’s focus on retention, engagement and academic success won’t change.”
A native of central Texas, Schwaig earned a BBA in Accounting and an MBA in Information Systems from Baylor University, a Master’s of Liberal Arts from Johns Hopkins University and a Ph.D. in Information Systems from the University of South Carolina.
Prior to joining KSU, Schwaig held faculty positions at Georgia State University and Baylor University and taught as a graduate assistant at the University of South Carolina. She joined the faculty at KSU in 2002, serving in several faculty and leadership roles including as interim department chair for the Department of Accounting and interim department chair for the Department of Computer Science and Information Systems in the College of Science and Mathematics.
Schwaig also served as the Dinos Eminent Scholar Chair of Entrepreneurial Management and professor of information systems, as well as the dean of KSU’s Michael J. Coles College of Business, a position she held from 2012 to 2019.
During her tenure as business school dean, the college’s reputation rose including its part-time MBA being ranked among the top 25 in the nation and first in Georgia among public institutions by Bloomberg Businessweek (2018). CEO magazine (2018) ranked the Executive MBA program first in Georgia and seventh nationally. The Online MBA program was ranked in the Top 20 nationally and first in Georgia by U.S. News and World Report (2019).
In addition, Schwaig led the college through two successful reaccreditation reviews by the Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business (AACSB International) and was instrumental in bringing in $13 million in philanthropic gifts.
Schwaig served as KSU provost and senior vice president for academic affairs from 2019 to 2021. In that role, she was responsible for all aspects of the university’s academic mission including the planning, budgeting and reviewing of programs in instruction, research and continuing education. She also supervised the deans of KSU’s 11 colleges and led the faculty in their efforts to strengthen academic programs and foster a culture of academic excellence.
She assumed the interim presidency of KSU in July 2021.
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A leader in innovative teaching and learning, Kennesaw State University offers undergraduate, graduate and doctoral degrees to its more than 43,000 students. Kennesaw State is a member of the University System of Georgia with 11 academic colleges. 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 7 percent of U.S. colleges and universities with an R1 or R2 status. For more information, visit kennesaw.edu.