Kennesaw State apologizes for adviser’s behavior caught on tape

Kennesaw State University apologized Friday for the behavior of one of the school’s academic advisers who was caught on a video that led to a social media outcry.

The apology comes after a two-week investigation of an interaction between KSU student Kevin Bruce and academic adviser Abby Dawson. Bruce recorded and posted a video of the May 13 interaction last month on social media. The video shows Bruce visiting the student advising office and being told by Dawson that waiting for an adviser to become available was harassment. Dawson threatens to call campus police when Bruce does not immediately leave the office.

The video set off cries of racism and criticism of the school’s advising policies.

Dawson was placed on administrative leave after a complaint was filed and prompted the investigation. Following the review, she received a formal written warning and was temporarily reassigned. She won’t be allowed to advise students until she completes required training.

“We have made it very clear to Ms. Dawson and her supervisors that the behavior she demonstrated on the video will not be tolerated,” Ken Harmon, KSU’s provost and vice president of academic affairs, said in a statement released Friday. “And while we have apologized to the student directly, we also want to publicly apologize for her behavior, which is not representative of KSU’s student-centered culture.”

The advising process in KSU’s WellStar College of Health and Human Services, where Dawson worked, will undergo a complete reorganization, according to the statement. All advisers will also be required to undergo training in student service and diversity.

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