Kennesaw State University Adviser Placed On Leave After Posting of Confrontation With Student Over His Waiting To Speak With An Adviser

Screen Shot 2015-05-18 at 7.45.49 AMThere is a controversial case out of Georgia where academic adviser Abbey Dawson has been put on leave at Kennesaw State University after being videotaped telling an African-American student, Kevin Bruce, that his waiting in the lobby to see an academic adviser constitutes harassment and would be reported to the police.


It is not clear if there had been prior exchanges with Bruce but Dawson appears to be responding to the refusal of Bruce to follow the appointment procedures for speaking with academic advisers. I can understand that the office was irritated by someone who refused to follow procedures if appointments are required in every academic advising session. If the office had made it clear that it was against policy to see “walk in” students, the refusal to comply and come back with an appointment could be viewed as bizarre. For example, if someone insists on seeing a doctor without an appointment and refuses to leave the waiting room, a nurse could find the conduct to problematic.

However, it is not clear why this became a matter of harassment or possible threatening conduct since there is no sign of Bruce doing anything other than sitting in the lobby. African-Americans often raise concerns (with good cause in some cases) that black males are viewed as inherently threatening by whites in circumstances where the actual conduct is inconsequential or indistinguishable from whites. It is the escalation to the level of harassment and police referral that justifies a closer investigation. Accordingly, I think the university was right to pursue the matter with this investigation.

Bruce also posted an email exchange showing that Dawson and others on the faculty were being unhelpful when he was seeking academic advice. Obviously, there is more to be considered in context of this controversy, which is why an investigation is warranted without assuming anything negative toward either Bruce or Dawson.

81 thoughts on “Kennesaw State University Adviser Placed On Leave After Posting of Confrontation With Student Over His Waiting To Speak With An Adviser”

  1. Olly, I understand your position. I once held that same position. And, as I said, I will respect that position from this point forward. What I did get from this exchange is a morning chuckle about you being ignored. As we know, it takes self discipline, self esteem, and focus to ignore someone. I have been “unfriended” and “ignored” @ least 500 times. LOL! I would PAY to be ignored and left alone.

    There are some interesting posts from JT this morning. They have not yet gotten emotional and illogical. I find mornings to be the best, late night the worst.

  2. It’s amusing to see that people who consider others abnormal, unreasonable and illogical would bother to engage them in discussion. I think perhaps Spinelli is right about wasting time with such people. I won’t waste my time again, thanks Spinelli.

  3. Nick,
    Anyone that comes into a debate expecting to find others using logic, reason and normalcy is woefully unprepared for anything else. I expect to find illogical, unreasonable and abnormal people to debate because the people I usually disagree with argue based on feelings and the way they want the world to be. I have to change the way I think in order to debate them. So although it appears pointless to debate with Inga/Annie, she really does leave a large debris field that can be sifted through an analyzed.

  4. Tyger, To answer your question, “What does that do to everyone’s thinking?” It does JUST what white elitists and their racial pimps want to do to everyone’s thinking. It wants them to think EVERYTHING is about race. The ultimate end is reparations. Ironically, Reagan planted the seed when reparations were given to Japanese after the mortal sin of the liberal icon, FDR.

  5. Olly, I once thought like yourself. People told me I was wrong but I thought I could expect logic, reason and normalcy. I learned the hard way that is impossible. I must respect your right to learn the hard way as well. I will not point it out again, and I will not say I told you so, either. That was said to me when I learned the hard way and I resented it. “We must each find our own path.”

  6. Annie, I will say it again, more simply: The information presented does not support the assumption it is a racially-based issue by itself. Then you show a video where there is racially-biased behavior of white cops treating a black man with an assault rifle differently than a white man with the same gun. You are using the video to infer and support the idea that the issue being raised by the article is racism. What the articles and both videos present is the emotional, bad logic of a person trying to get his way to a degree that he is upsetting his counselors and disrupting their standard procedures in order to satisfy his demands. There are no racist remarks in the dialog to indicate this was a racism issue. Remove race of the individuals concerned from the equation, and it is an issue about a student not getting his way and presenting his side of the story to the public with a very emotional and suspect logic, with the media taking his side without presenting enough balanced information about it either. With all the racial violence and killings in the news recently, everything is being told with a racially-charged social bend to it instead of being fair and balanced. What does that do to everyone’s thinking?

  7. You have your steadfast opinions, Annie. I shouldn’t expect you recognize the truth in what I said. But, it’s okay, you’re entitled to express your opinions, even when you’re wrong and in the wrong context for it.

  8. As a matter of fact, how could you possibly even consider what he said on this tape as argumentative? Speak about spurious…

  9. Tyger, nope. If I think you are mistaken I will say so, whether you consider it argumentative or not. That’s not my concern. My concern in truth. Mr. Bruce wasn’t being argumentative. I don’t know how you could come to that conclusion.

  10. No, discussing racism is not a taboo subject, but it is being suggested as a possibility, with the inference it is a true conclusion, way, way too often currently. No matter how many words you use which are supposedly neutral, you are stating your opinion in what you present overall, and that is that this is a racial issue when the facts do not support it. To claim otherwise is spurious and just as argumentative as Mr. Bruce is being.

  11. No I don’t think it’s making a judgment. I think it’s considering a possibility. There’s a difference. I think that the conclusion that is being jumped to is that I said for a certainty that it was based on racism. I didn’t. It’s interesting that people are getting bothered by even the suggestion of racism. It’s not a taboo subject.

  12. Conjecture, Annie, that this is a racial issue, when there is no evidence presented to support that, is making a judgment. Also known as jumping to a conclusion. The media is selling race right now, and almost everyone is buying it. Perfect time to promote personal biases, from either side.

  13. No one has made a judgment, only conjecture. That often happens in discussion. People discuss possibilities all the time.

  14. I find it amusing that no one has pointed out, or maybe even noticed, that:

    1) This article says that Kevin Bruce is black and his voice has a typically black accent and use of English, but he does not appear in the video, the Washington Post article to which this article is linked doesn’t mention he is black, nor does the MyAtlantaFox.com story say he is black. You have to actually see the interview video the TV station showed to see that he is black. The lady in his video is obviously white, and certainly JT is not trying to prejudice anyone by stating that Bruce is black. So, why does everyone jump to the conclusion that this is a racial issue?

    2) The tweets “evidence” presented by the Washington Post and the statements made by Bruce in the video interview are clearly meant to stir up sympathies for him, but no objective information is given about what has gone on between him and the counselor previously. A critical review of his language in his tweets and the interview should conclude that he is antagonistic and argumentative, but this is not discussed here. Is everyone so focused on race these days that no one can see the false, emotional “logic” being used?

    As usual, many folks here are rushing to give judgment with insufficient facts and details.

  15. Nick,
    I don’t need the afternoon back. I participate in discussions and/or engage in debate for purposes that are not always apparent. If my participation appears fruitless it’s because you are expecting a result that I am not. There is always the opportunity to learn something new and when I feel that has come to an end then I will quietly disengage.

  16. I understand not accepting walk ins if it means that someone cuts in front of another student who had an appointment. There will have to be an investigation, but this appears to be an overreaction. If all he is doing is just sitting there, then you can tell him that he can wait there all day, every day, and he will never be seen because he would be taking someone else’s turn. Or you could help him make an appointment.

    The only way her response would have been justified would have been if he was making threatening comments or gestures. Did he say he was going to follow one of the administrators to her car?

    I think this warrants an investigation to see what improvements need to be made in policy, but jumping on the race bandwagon is premature at this point.

    A better idea would have been to have another student, a white male, with a body camera, go undercover. Have him sit there without an appointment and refuse to leave, and compare and contrast the reaction he gets with the African American man’s.

    Stores do this periodically to gauge customer service and policy. It’s called “mystery shoppers.” Unbiased data and Al Sharpton not required.

  17. Some folks just cannot stand that others of differing opinions can actually have a civil discussion. Spinelli, you could stand to learn a few things from Olly, but I doubt you have it in you.

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