- Kennesaw State University will expand its outreach to homeless students with a privately-funded on-campus living suite designed for short-term use.
- The suite will offer students without housing 14 days of dorm accommodations while the university works to secure an assignment or placement, an initiative which officials say could immediately impact between five to seven students.
- Kennesaw State is the first public university to field full-time staff committed to homeless outreach and service provision, and the first to offer designated living space for qualified homeless students.
Kennesaw State is ahead of many colleges and universities throughout the country, which may seek to hire similar staff for homeless engagement in light of the Department of Education's new guidance on financial aid for homeless students. But the living space is a core element to a multi-dimensional approach that most college leaders should consider in developing initiative to support this student group.
Getting students to acknowledge homelessness and to complete certain forms, verifying means or the lack thereof, and estimating the amount of financial aid a student may be receiving versus what they are willing to pay for housing are just a few hurdles in helping students to help themselves, and involve multiple offices and requiring multiple safeguards to ensure protection for students.