Dena Freeman-Patton, Associate Athletic Director
Dena Freeman-Patton, in her fifth year as Georgia State's assistant director of athletics for student-athlete development, oversees the support of all 345 student-athletes at Georgia State. She also serves as the academic advisor for the men's basketball program. Under her supervision, the Georgia State University student-athletes have increased their GPA and maintained grade point average of above a 3.0 for the past three years that includes the addition of a brand new football team. In addition, the APR rates for the department are at an all-time high. Freeman-Patton was a huge part of the recent success of the men's basketball program that currently boasts a %100 percent exhausted eligibility graduation rate, including 15 men's basketball graduates in the past four years.
She returned to Georgia State in March 2007 after serving as academic advisor and then academic coordinator from 1997-2002. In between, Freeman-Patton worked at the University of Maryland (2005-07) as an associate director of academic support and career development and at North Carolina State (2002-05), where she was as an academic coordinator for football.
Freeman-Patton lettered in basketball at Liberty University, where she earned her bachelor's degree in sports management from in 1996. She added a master's in sports administration from Georgia State in 1999.
Freeman-Patton is on the Board of Directors for the National Association of Academic Advisors for Athletics and former Life Skills Committee Chair. Georgia State University is a nationally certified academic support program under this organization.
The Baltimore, Md., native is married to Samuel Patton and has a son, Cameron, 10.
Sidney Ball, Sr. Academic Advisor/Community Service Coordinator
Men's Basketball, Track and Field, Cross Country
Sidney Ball is in his first year working
in the student-athlete development department at Georgia State. His main responsibilities include tracking the
academic progress of the Panthers women's basketball, volleyball, and M/W Track and Cross Country teams.
Ball spent six years working in the academic advising department of UAB athletics before coming to GSU. Ball is a former UAB student-athlete, lettering four seasons on the Blazers' men's basketball team. During his tenure at UAB, he was a two-time team captain and a valuable asset to the program, both on and off the court. During Ball's senior year, he helped the Blazers to a 22-10 record, including a 12-4 mark in Conference USA and a share of the regular season crown, as well as an appearance in the NCAA Tournament Sweet 16.
A native of Duncanville, Ala., Ball earned his bachelor's degree in justice sciences from UAB in 2005. He is currently an active member of the National Association of Academic Advisors for Athletics (N4A).
Dusty Bennett, Sr. Academic Coordinator/Student-Athlete Affairs Coordinator
Football, Baseball, Men and Women's Golf
Dusty Bennett is in his third full-time season with Student-Athlete Development at Georgia State University, but is in his eighth year as a member of the Panther family, formally as a player and Graduate Assistant.
In his years working with Football and Men and Women's Golf, Dusty has watched as his student-athletes earned multiple CAA Scholar Athlete of the Year awards: Tom Sherreard  & Charlotte Lorentzen [2010, 2011] while also securing five All-American Scholars: Tom Sherreard, Charlotte Lorentzen [2010,2011], Alan Fowler [2010, 2011], Laura Sanchez , and Solveig Helgesen 
As the inaugural season of GSU football approached, Dusty watched as his team excelled academically off the field on their way to a 2.82 cumulative GPA during the 2009-2010 academic year. The 2010-2011 football season brought success both on and off the field for the panthers as they secured a winning record for the inaugural season and accomplished a 2.75 cumulative GPA. The Woman's Golf team won the 2010 CAA Championship while earning a berth into the 2010 NCAA Regionals all while maintaining a 3.14 cumulative GPA. The Lady Panthers finished Runner-Up in 2011and sent one individual to the 2011 NCAA Regional Golf Tournament, but 2010-2011 illustrated tremendous effort in the classroom on their way to a 3.62 cumulative GPA. The Men's Golf team recorded the highest GPA for all of the men's sports represented at Georgia State during the 2009-2010 seasons, all while competing at the highest level of amateur golf and sending one individual to the NCAA Regional Golf Tournament.
Bennett spent the 2008-2009 season as a Graduate Assistant to Life-Skills at Georgia State University in the Student-Athlete Development department. He worked with the Men and Women's Golf teams, Men and Women's Tennis, Volleyball and Women's Soccer. Bennett also served as the Life-Skills intern during the 2008-2009 seasons helping with the planning and execution of different Life-Skills events such as the CAA Blood-Drive and Toys 4 Tots.
Bennett was a four year member of the Panther baseball team (2005-2008) and an active member in the Student-Athlete Advisory Committee where he was one of two student-athletes from Georgia State University to be represented at the CAA Conference in Baltimore, MD.
After receiving his Bachelor Degree in Art History from Georgia State University in May 2008, Bennett went on to complete his Master's in Sport Administration also at Georgia State University in 2009. Dusty currently teaches GSU1010 at Georgia State University, a class structured for freshman student-athletes where they will learn all the essential skills needed to be a successful student-athlete. Bennett also serves as the International Student-Athlete Liaison helping to establish a relationship between student-athletes and on-campus international student resources.
Along with his duties as an Academic Advisor, Dusty also leads the Student-Athlete Affairs program at Georgia State University.
A native of Tyrone, GA, Bennett currently resides in the Atlanta area.
Jessica Summey, Academic Coordinator/S.A.A.C
Women's Basketball, Men and Women's Tennis, Women's Soccer
Jessica Summey is in her first year with Student-Athlete Development at Georgia State University. Summey graduated from Appalachian State in 2005 with a bachelor's degree in Organizational Communication and was a member of the track and field team. She returned to Appalachian and earned a master's degree in College Student Development in 2008.
During 2008-2009 Summey interned at Winthrop University in Rock Hill, South Carolina. She was responsible for advising and mentoring student-athletes. She also worked with the Champs/Life Skills program planning and implementing various events. In 2010 she interned at The University of Memphis working with football and men's basketball. She also assisted with initial eligibility of all sports.
Summey is a member of the National Association of Academic Advisors for Athletes. She is a native of Hendersonville, North Carolina.
Softball, Volleyball, Men's Soccer
Lauren Mitchell - Tutorial Services
William Judson - Football
Jenna Closner - Football
Jennifer Wallace - Men's Basketball
Monica Pope - Women's Basketball
Sara Dashiell - Baseball
David Ferrer - S-A Affairs/Volleyball Advisor