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ken smith

Degree: BA in Political Science ('94)

What are you up to now?

For the last 11 years, I have been the Executive Director of Price Hill Will, a non-profit community development corporation serving the neighborhoods of East, West and Lower Price Hill on the west side of Cincinnati.  Our mission is to create systemic change through physical impact, economic impact and social impact.  We have a wide range of activity including community gardens/orchards, business district planning, residential/commercial real estate development, community programming, creative placemaking, cultural events and even a 125-member youth orchestra.  In my spare time, I love politics, hiking, NKU basketball, random road trips and bourbon-not necessarily in that order.

How did NKU help you in your journey?

While many people might not consider Northern Kentucky/Greater Cincinnati the most diverse or metropolitan area, I grew up in an ultra-homogenous small town in Southeastern Kentucky.  Attending NKU exposed me to different people, cultures and viewpoints.  Northern gave me a wider world view fundamentally impacting who I am today.

What advice do you have for students?

I would strongly encourage students to become involved at NKU outside the classroom.  When I attended, there were only a few hundred students living on campus, but we, and the commuters who were involved in organizations, sports and other activates, had a completely different experience than those who were only on campus for classes.  Find something that you’re interested in, become involved, consider taking a leadership role.  You’ll build friendships that will last a lifetime and gain valuable experiences that can help prepare you for later success.