Cox Communications Academic Center for Student-Athletes Announces New Hires

by Judy Willson | Assoc. Communications Director
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Cox Communications Academic Center for Student-Athletes Announces New Hires

BATON ROUGE – The Cox Communications Academic Center for Student-Athletes has announced the hiring of three new staff members recently. Kenyatta Walker is the new Associate Director of Academic Affairs working directly with football. Kennen Maddox and Jerrica Steward have been named Assistant Directors of Academic Affairs.

“On behalf of the Academic Center for Student-Athletes, we are extremely excited to have Kenyatta, Kennen and Jerrica join our Academic Affairs team this Spring,” said Director of Academic Affairs Jason Shaw. “They bring a wealth of knowledge and experience in terms of student support services and working within the realm of Higher Education. To have the opportunity to add their skills and expertise to our talented staff is a great resource for the students and University. I feel fortunate to have the chance to work with them and witness the accomplishments that are in store for them at LSU.”

Walker joins the staff after serving two years at Alabama A&M as the Associate Athletic Director of Academics and Senior Woman Administrator. She also spent two years at Prairie View A&M where she served as the primary athletics academic advisor for the football, men’s basketball, baseball, volleyball, softball and men’s track & field programs. During her time at Prairie View, she was instrumental in coordinating the Panthers’ first Athletic Summer Bridge program.

Walker also spent two years at West Virginia as an academic coordinator for the Mountaineers’ football, wrestling and tennis programs, after beginning her career as an athletic academic advisor and tutor coordinator at Alabama State. She worked with eight different Hornet teams in a full-time role after being promoted from her graduate assistant position. Walker earned her master’s degree in History from Alabama State while also serving as a part-time instructor in the Life Skills program, and was an Upward Bound instructor at Georgia Southwestern State.

Walker earned her bachelor’s degree in Political Science with a minor in Sociology from Georgia Southwestern State and another in History from Alabama State. She is an active member of the National Association of Academic and Student-Athlete Development (N4A), Women Leaders in College Sports (WL) and the Minority Opportunities Athletic Association (MOAA).

“I am extremely excited about being a part of this great culture and family work environment,” said Walker. “I am looking forward to growing professionally and assisting our students to becoming independent learners and thinkers.”

Maddox will work directly with the LSU football team and will serve on the Academic Standards and Policies Committee. He will also have oversight of the Graduate Assistant Development Program.

Maddox joins the ACSA team after four-plus years at South Florida. Most recently he served as the assistant director for basketball academics for the Bulls, working the men’s and women’s basketball teams. He also worked with the football and softball teams as an academic coordinator during his time at USF. He also coordinated the Intern Development Program, supervised computer lab monitors and managed the operations of the academics facility. He entered the athletic academic support industry as an academic counselor at ULM in 2015. Prior to his year in Monroe, Maddox was an academic mentor at UMKC, a development coordinator for the St. Louis Rams, a field operations manager at Missouri Baptist and a substitute teacher for the Parkway School District in St. Louis.

Maddox earned his undergraduate degree in Sports Business and Entertainment Management from Missouri State where he was a collegiate student-athlete on the baseball team. He received his master’s degree in Sports Management at Missouri Baptist.

“It feels great to be back home in the great state of Louisiana and working at its flagship institution,” said Maddox. “It has been a dream to wear the Purple & Gold and represent LSU in some capacity. Years later, that dream has come true and I am thankful for the opportunity to be working with a great group of professionals and student-athletes.”

Steward will be the primary advisor for the men’s and women’s track & field programs. She will also serve on the Academic Standards and Policies Committee and have oversight of the Graduate Assistant Development Program.

Steward makes the move across campus from the LSU Online department where she served as a learner support specialist for the past three semesters. This is her second tour at LSU, joining the ACSA staff in 2014 as an intern as she earned her master’s degree in Kinesiology. She advanced over the next two years to strategy tutor and assistant academic advisor before taking a position at UAB.

Steward was an academic counselor for the Blazers’ football and women’s basketball teams for two years before returning to Baton Rouge in 2019. She got started in the profession as an undergraduate student at ULM where she earned her bachelor’s degree in Kinesiology and Exercise Science.

“I am looking forward to helping students reach their educational goals,” said Steward. “The opportunity to join the team and continue working with students where I first developed my passion for student support services is what influenced me to come to LSU.”

Accountability – Commitment – Success – Integrity – Diversity – Teamwork – Service – Education

It is through living the values of the Total Team Commitment 2017-2022, particularly education, academic success, and service to the community that six student-athletes are recognized as Cox Communications Academic Center Student-Athlete of the month. These values are fundamental to the growth and development of our student-athletes as they enter to learn, then leave to serve.

The Cox Communications Academic Center for Student-Athletes is a 54,000 square-foot facility comprised of teams for academic affairs, student affairs and information technology, who annually serve more than 500 student-athletes. The purpose of the CCACSA is to provide an all-inclusive, student-centered support structure for all student-athletes from matriculation, through graduation, and life beyond.