All posts by Danielle Harris

Phi Kappa Phi Arsenal Lecture Series

Augusta, Ga. – Pushing the Boundaries in Education will be the topic of discussion for Phi Kappa Phi Arsenal Lecture Series on Thursday, Jan. 26, at 2:30 p.m. in 170 University Hall at Augusta State University.

What about Us?: Standards Based Education and the Dilemma of Student Activity will be presented by Edgar Johnson, associate professor in the Department of Communications and Professional Writing.

His research areas include communication, education, and assessment, rhetoric of public education, and youth culture. Johnson received his bachelor’s degree from Oregon State University and doctoral degree from the University of Iowa.

Shannon Byrd-Jones, instructor in the Department of Educational Leadership, Counseling, and Special Education, will present Technology Integration in Today’s Classrooms.

Her research interests are the effects of virtual and online education on students with disabilities and special needs, use of technology integration in special education, and the effects of online vs. traditional learning. Byrd-Jones received her bachelor, master, and doctoral degrees from the University of South Carolina.

This free event is sponsored by Augusta State’s chapter of the National Honor Society of Phi Kappa Phi, the Department of Educational Leadership, Counseling, and Special Education, and the Department of Communication and Professional Writing.

For more information, call ASU’s Office of Public Relations and Publications at 706-737-1444.

Regents Approve Campus Consolidation Plan

ATLANTA — January 10, 2012
The Board of Regents approved today University System of Georgia Chancellor Hank Huckaby’s recommendation to consolidate eight of the System’s 35 colleges and universities. Huckaby announced the recommendation last week.
The recommended consolidations are: Gainesville State College and North Georgia College & State University (Dahlonega); Middle Georgia College (Cochran) and Macon State College; Waycross College and South Georgia College (Douglas); and Augusta State University and Georgia Health Sciences University.
“The Board’s approval now paves the way for us to proceed,” said Huckaby. “We will focus on how these consolidations enable us to better serve our students and areas of the state more efficiently and effectively. I look forward to working with the eight institutions on this process.”
Now that the plan has board approval, Huckaby will begin to implement the plan, which is expected to take between 12-18 months to finalize.
Campus working groups will be appointed by Huckaby and charged with developing detailed recommendations for consolidation. Huckaby said the campus working groups should be up and running by the end of January. Implementation actions will be reviewed by the University System Office and approved by the Regents’ Special Committee on Consolidation and the full board.
The consolidation plan is just one of a series of new efforts launched by the chancellor, each part of a focus on increasing college completion rates, broadening access to public higher education and maintaining affordability. Others include the System’s participation in Gov. Nathan Deal’s “Complete College Georgia” initiative, a study of how the USG uses its current facilities, the future design and construction of facilities, the expansion of distance education, a new model of academic program review as well as the integration of academic, facilities and fiscal activities.


The University System has created a special website to help coordinate information and communication related to the consolidation effort:

ASU/GHSU consolidation proposed

AUGUSTA ,  Ga. – A recommendation to consolidate Augusta State University (ASU) and Georgia Health Sciences University (GHSU)—two public institutions in Augusta, Ga.—will be on the agenda of the Board of Regents of the University System of Georgia when it convenes for its monthly meeting Tuesday, Jan. 10, in Atlanta.

The recommendation incorporates the six principles for consolidation previously adopted by the Regents at their November meeting and is one of four consolidations being proposed. Other consolidations include merging Waycross  College  and  South Georgia  College ; Gainesville State College and  North  Georgia  College  and  State  University ; and Middle  Georgia  College   and Macon State College.

If approved, the ASU-GHSU consolidation process will begin immediately with a target date for full integration by fall 2013. Next steps include the appointment of a broad-based implementation committee, with representatives recommended by the respective presidents and approved by the Chancellor. That committee will make recommendations for final approval by Board of Regents.  Further discussions with the campus and broader community regarding the consolidation will occur next week.

The consolidation will create a new comprehensive research university in Georgia that builds on the strengths of both institutions to increase degree offerings, provide greater service level to students, enhance education attainment rates, expand distance learning options and create economies of scale.

“Our goal is a more educated Georgia, with a network of institutions that offer a range of needed degrees for 21st century demands,” said Hank Huckaby, Chancellor of the University System of Georgia. “We are going to fulfill our mission within the limited resources available.”

ASU President William A. Bloodworth, Jr., who previously announced his decision to retire from the presidency after serving almost 19 years, pledged his support and assistance for the consolidation.  Plans are that GHSU President Ricardo Azziz will become president of the new university.
“The consolidation will present some challenges; however Chancellor Huckaby, Board Chair Benjamin Tarbutton and, especially, Dr. Azziz are fully committed to ASU’s focus on student learning, access and the value of the liberal arts and sciences,” said Bloodworth.

Increasing efficiencies is also a goal of the consolidation. It is anticipated that it will take at least 12 to 18 months to implement the consolidation and to properly calculate savings attained by the action. Realized savings will be reinvested into the instructional mission to serve students, said Huckaby.

“I am very excited about the recommendation from the Chancellor and USG staff to create a larger comprehensive university benefiting our students, faculty and staff through collaborative research, greater educational offerings and enhanced economic impact for the community and State of Georgia,” said GHSU President Ricardo Azziz.

The direct economic impact of both institutions combined is nearly 2.5 billion dollars. A consolidated institution would help increase that impact to the state and local community.

For more information, visit the USG Consolidation Web site,

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ASU professors help to reduce your time in waiting lines

Augusta, Ga. –  Tis’ the season for long check-out lines, but what if there was a way for companies to shorten the wait time at the cash register? In the study, Practical Insights on Pitfalls in Estimating Queue Performance, Todd Schultz and Jim Grayson, professors in Augusta State University’s Hull College of Business, analyze waiting line systems or queuing systems to help businesses speed up time at the cash register.

“As we reviewed the standard queuing formula being taught to our business students, we noticed how the answers left a lot of room for variability for waiting lines,” Schultz said. “We wanted to remove as much error as we could from these equations to provide a more accurate wait time and more practical guidance for business owners.”
“The significant estimation errors usually found in standard queuing formulas is rarely addressed, and especially in the materials developed for students and practitioners,” Grayson said. “That is why we wanted to research this topic, because it was our goal to provide information to our students that is both educational and applicable to the real world.”
With the use of the Excel spreadsheet Visual Basic for Applications program and the spreadsheet-based application Crystal Ball, Schutlz and Grayson developed over 10,000 simulation modules that would test the standard queuing formula against queuing systems or waiting line systems in various conditions.  The results from this study show how the estimated- wait time derived from the standard queuing formula may not be accurate due to factors such as the time of day a business is open or even the amount of time it takes for an employee to complete a task.
“There are times during the day when businesses are extremely busy or very slow. That is why companies must treat these estimated waiting times as averages and not actual numbers, Grayson said. “If business owners don’t take these factors into consideration, they can cause waiting line issues for their customers which could ultimately have an effect on their sales.”
Grayson received his bachelor’s degree in general engineering from the United States Military Academy. He earned a master’s degree in business administration as well as a doctoral degree in management science and operations research from the University of North Texas.
Schultz earned his bachelor’s degree in management science from the Georgia Institute of Technology and his doctoral degree in operations research from The Johns Hopkins University.
For more information or to schedule an interview, contact Danielle Harris, media relations specialist, in ASU’s Office of Public Relations and Publications at 706-737-1876.


Campus Closing

Augusta, Ga.- In observance of the holiday season, all offices, labs, and services of Augusta State University will be closed beginning at 4:30 p.m. on Friday, Dec. 23, through Monday, Jan. 2. The campus will reopen on Tuesday, Jan. 3, 2012. For more information, contact ASU’s Office of Public Relations and Publications at 706-737-1444.