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Stephanie Hayes Schlea

“NKU is so much more than just a degree.”

Stephanie Hayes Schlea is a 2011 biology graduate with a concentration in Ecology, Evolution, Organismal and a minor in Honors.

Stephanie is the Manager of Regulatory and Scientific Affairs at the Association of Metropolitan Water Agencies in Washington, D.C. The association is an organization of the largest publicly owned water utilities in the United States. She works to keep members informed of any regulatory changes on the national front, primarily within the Environmental Protection Agency.

She says that NKU helped her in multiple ways. Her research through the biology program pushed me and gave me the necessary confidence to speak in front of large audiences who often know more than she does on the subject she is speaking on, as well as learning how to communicate scientific issues to different audiences, whether it be scientists, teachers, political leaders or the general public. In addition, the Honors program helped her to connect her knowledge, goals and ambition to a larger framework to see the bigger picture.

Stephanie knows to ask the questions, “How does my research, work, or decisions impact others outside of my immediate circle of influence and my community as a whole?”

Her advice to students would be not to limit yourself and try as many things as possible. NKU gives you so many unique opportunities, whether it’s leading your own research project, studying abroad, working with amazing faculty and staff or something as simple as meeting and making lifelong friends.