Skip to main content
Arturo Minera

March 2024 marks Amy Danzo’s 16th anniversary as an Northern Kentucky University (NKU) employee, as well as her first as the inaugural director of NKU’s Adult and Transfer Center. After a decade-and-a-half working in Testing Services and nearly five years with Adult Learner Programs and Services, her new position represents the centralization of NKU’s offerings to transfer students. She hopes that through the department’s efforts, NKU can become a destination for adult learners seeking second chances.

“I have a vision of us being the hope that many discouraged students have been seeking for a long time,” Danzo says. “My hope is that we are thoughtful and proactive enough to reach them with the message that NKU values their experience.”

Currently, the Center fulfills a number of needs for its adult learners—enrollees ages 21 and up—and transfer students. Advisors help students choose the degree that’s best for their desired career path and calculate how quickly they can earn it, taking past credits earned in classes and through job experience into consideration.

“We survey the students about what they’ve done in their lives,” Danzo says. “What kind of work experience have they had? What kind of trainings have you done? We talk about it, see where the learning outcomes are in terms of courses here and then we offer them an array of options to get course credits, without having to actually take the class.” We let students show us what they know, and then our faculty members evaluate the learning that has occurred through their experiences in an attempt to let them progress to their major courses. 

“This is my happy place. I cannot imagine working in any other environment than NKU because it matches so well with my values."

The Adult and Transfer Center also takes student parents into particular consideration, directing them to resources like Parents Attending College and CCAMPIS (Child Care Access Means Parents in School Program), a federal grant that can cover the cost of childcare for students.

Danzo has noticed that this assistance fosters a greater feeling of acceptance among NKU’s adult students.

“With any advisor who works with adult and transfer students, one of the things you’ll hear often is that they feel like they're going to be the only one that identifies as a transfer student, or that they’re going to be the oldest in the class,” she says. “One of the important things about these resources that we offer is that they create a sense of belonging in our student parents, adult students, transfer students, and military-affiliated students.”

Reflecting on her 16 years at NKU, Danzo says that the main factor that has kept her on campus is the university’s people. 

“This is my happy place,” she says. “I cannot imagine working in any other environment than NKU because it matches so well with my values: equity, access, and making sure that people of different different socioeconomic classes, races, genders, sexual identities, ethnicities, abilities, and religions receive the same opportunities. I'm very excited for our current leadership, because I feel like the president and the provost currently share those same values.”

Of the time she’s spent on campus, some of her best memories were spent at Feast For Finals, pouring gravy on biscuits as she spent quality time with the university’s community.

“Looking back, I’m picturing myself smiling and laughing in a state where all time is lost,” she says. “We’re hanging out with faculty, staff, students and even the president, and everyone’s free to be themselves.”

She adds that NKU is filled with women who are amazing individuals and leaders: “I’m just one of the spokes in the wheel, helping to keep things going.”

About This Article

March 2024

Written by
Jude Noel ('18)
Communications Specialist, NKU Magazine