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Dear Colleagues:

Below is the summary of the presentations and activity that took place at the regularly scheduled Board of Regents meeting on November 14, 2018.

  1. The Board heard three presentations in the morning as a part of its joint policy and finance committee meeting.
  • Co-Interim Chief Administration Officer and Chief Financial Officer Mike Hales and Comptroller Russ Kerdolff provided the Board of Regents with the annual financial report.

  • Vice President for Enrollment and Degree Management Kim Scranage, Co-Interim Chief Administration Officer and Chief Financial Officer Mike Hales, Executive Director for Planning and Institutional Research Shawn Rainey and Assistant Vice President for Enrollment and Financial Assistance Leah Stewart provided the Board of Regents with the annual enrollment report.

  • Provost and Executive Vice President for Academic Affairs Sue Ott Rowlands, Vice President for Student Affairs Dan Nadler, Assistant Vice President for Student Affairs Dannie Moore, and Vice Provost for Undergraduate Academic Affairs Ande Durojaiye provided the Board of Regents with a report on our student success initiatives. Joining them were student success initiative presenters Cindy Knox, Peg Adams, Amy Danzo, Amanda Johnson and students Rebecca Davis, Amanda Kulmann, Jacob Childers, Erin Pittmann and Angela Russell.

2. In the afternoon, the Board approved all of the recommended items.

The Board’s next regularly scheduled meeting will be on January 16, 2019.



Presidential Comments
Board of Regents
November 14, 2018

Thank you Chair Scheben and members of the Board.

An update on Success by Design

  • During NKU’s 2018 fall convocation, I shared with the campus that design thinking tools and Vijay Govindarajan’s 3-box solution methodology would be utilized in an accelerated timeframe of six months to develop a 3-year strategic framework for NKU.
  • Since October 1, 2018, the Strategic Framework Core Team has been collecting input and ideas through TalkShop sessions conducted with students, faculty, staff, and members of the community and the region. To date, we have had almost 1,700 face-to-face engagements with all stakeholders through 77 TalkShop sessions.
  • On October 22, we launched our website at, which included an online survey format, as well as Whiteboard Wednesdays. This has led to additional engagement, including online responses to questions focused on access, completion and career & community engagement, plus 62 respondents to a closed-ended survey.
  • Overall, engagement — both internally and externally — has been incredibly beneficial to this important work and we will continue our external face-to-face discussions through December.

One-time investments

  • Through the summer and the start of the fall semester, we witnessed an unanticipated decline in enrollment, largely due to a smaller entering first-year class and a decrease in retention of continuing students.
  • This challenge needed immediate attention and action. After consulting with various campus constituents, I authorized a one-time investment of $1.2 million for marketing, retention and recruitment efforts that will impact both current and new students enrolling in fall 2019.
  • Vice Presidents Eric Gentry and Kim Scranage have taken the lead in our marketing efforts.
  • Provost Sue Ott Rowlands and Vice President Dan Nadler co-lead the retention efforts.
  • Vice President Scranage and Assistant Vice President Leah Stewart are leading our recruitment efforts.
  • Key efforts include:

    -Promoting the EDGE program
    -Nov is free application month
    -Expanded micro-grants, advising, and strengthening programming in the Center for Student Inclusiveness
    -Targeted marketing to international students, high demand programs, 12 high schools, and bilingual students

  • They are all engaging faculty, chairs, deans, staff and students in this collaborative work to deliver results.

FUEL NKU and Kroger partnership

  • On November 8, 2018, NKU, the NKU Foundation and The Kroger Foundation announced a partnership to fight food insecurity on this university’s campus.
  • The first phase of the partnership will expand FUEL NKU, our food pantry, to more than seven-times its current size—from 300-square-feet to 2,300-square-feet.
  • During the 2016-2017 academic year, 650 NKU students visited the pantry and that number has increased every year.
  • Construction will begin in the late fall and is expected to be complete by early 2020. We are so grateful for Kroger’s commitment to our pantry and their help in making a lasting impact on the lives of our students and their success.

Health Innovation Center Grand Opening

  • Northern Kentucky University dedicated the new Health Innovation Center (HIC) on October 17, 2018.
  • We welcomed Kentucky Gov. Matt Bevin and St. Elizabeth Healthcare President and CEO Garren Colvin in dedicating the university’s newest building.
  • This $105 million project is home to NKU’s College of Health Professions and the Institute for Health Innovation. The Kentucky General Assembly allocated $97 million toward the construction of the HIC, which is the first new academic building constructed on NKU’s campus since Griffin Hall opened in October 2011.

St. E Physicians ground breaking at NKU’s entrance

  • Leaders from NKU, St. Elizabeth Healthcare, OrthoCincy, Fairmount Properties, Campbell County and Highland Heights broke ground on the new St. Elizabeth Physicians medical office building on October 18, 2018.
  • This facility, located on the north side of Nunn Drive and US 27, will offer urgent care, primary care and specialty physicians, in addition to OrthoCincy’s onsite orthopedic office, physical therapy and other emergent orthopedic services. It is scheduled to open in early 2020.
  • The medical office building is Phase I of the Town Center mixed-use project that will transform the gateway to NKU’s campus. Later phases will see the development of restaurants, retail space, market-rate apartments, hotel, parking and new public gathering spaces.

OKI award for NKU’s town center project

  • NKU’s Town Center project will receive $861,704 to improve access to the mixed-use development, thanks to the award from the Ohio-Kentucky-Indiana Regional Council of Governments (OKI).
  • The improvements will include a transit super stop, turn lanes on Nunn Drive, upgrade and reconstruction of old sidewalks and a new pedestrian/bicycle path linking NKU’s campus to the new development.

Highlights and Accomplishment Updates

  • The inaugural Spotlight on Scholarship event was held at the end of October, showcasing the research, scholarship and creative activity of over 30 faculty members.

o   The winner of the Sol award (named for the Norse goddess of enlightenment) was Kirsten Schwarz from Environmental Science for her research and community engagement work focused on strategic depaving on the westside of Newport. 

o   The runner-up was Sara Drabik from Electronic and Media Broadcasting for her work on women in coffee.

  • The Institute of Health Innovation has been awarded a Rural Communities Opioid Response Program Planning grant for 2018 from the Federal Office of Rural Health Policy, part of the Health Resources and Services Administration.

o   This federal grant supports treatment for and prevention of substance-use disorder in rural counties with the highest risk. Our partners are Owen County Schools, Three Rivers Health District, the Northern Kentucky Area Development District, the Owen County Drug Prevention Coalition, and Northkey Community Care. 

o   With this grant, we will seek to identify and close gaps in early intervention and access to treatment and services in Owen County and across the entire Northern Kentucky region.

  • For the first time since 2010, the Chase trial team won the Kentucky mock trial competition, beating both UK and Louisville. Congratulations are in order for the team of Stephanie Brockman, Zach Epperson, Christy Hiance, and Sheree Weichold.
  • The Haile/US Bank College of Business’ Center for Innovation and Entrepreneurship (CIE) was selected as one of the five finalists for the “Outstanding Contribution to Venture Creation” award at the 2018 Global Consortium of Entrepreneurship Centers’ annual conference in October.

    o     NKU is among some great company for the 2018 honor – Michigan State, Babson College, The University of Notre Dame and University of Stockholm, Sweden.

o   The CIE was selected from more than 100 submissions that were reviewed by peer institutions to recognize the very best in entrepreneurship education.

  • More than 800 young women from area high schools attended the 8th annual Young Women LEAD conference hosted by the College of Education & Human Services November 1 & 2 here at NKU. Young Women LEAD is a leadership conference for high school girls focusing on leadership, education and development. The purpose of the conference is to empower high school girls to embrace their strengths and to reach their full potential.
  • A highly successful partnership to operate our on-campus Early Childhood Center was created between Northern Kentucky University and the University of Cincinnati.  This partnership has resulted in a significant increase in enrollment and also allowed for continuation of NKU’s Child Care Access Means Parents In School (CCAMPIS) Grant, which provides funds of approximately $135,000 on an annual basis to help low-income parents with campus-based child care services.
  • The Division of Student Affairs received a three-year grant of nearly $300,000 from the Office of Violence Against Women – Campus Grant to continue the university’s efforts to reduce sexual assault, domestic violence, dating violence, and stalking on campus. 

o   The grant is housed in the Norse Violence Prevention Center and will make possible a range of services, including specialized training for campus law enforcement, healthcare providers, university personnel, and others who are often first responders. 

o   With the grant, we are able to hire a full-time project coordinator/prevention specialist, hire a part-time advocate to expand our direct service capacity, expand our prevention efforts with African American, Latino, and international students, and provide trauma-informed yoga for survivors of sexual assault.

  • More than 10,000 student community service hours have been performed to date this semester.
  • Norse student-athletes continue to excel in the classroom. Following an impressive 3.37 cumulative GPA in fall 2017, NKU’s student-athletes elevated the bar to a department-record 3.47 GPA in the spring semester. Every program posted a cumulative grade point average above 3.13, including a 3.7 by the men’s tennis program that led the department. The softball program registered a 3.67 GPA, which earned recognition by the National Fastpitch Coaches Association for being the second-highest in the country.
  • Baseball’s Will Hauter was named a CoSIDA Academic All-American over the summer, while both Rikard Lindqvist and Hannah Fischer of the men’s and women’s soccer programs, respectively, were recently named CoSIDA Academic All-District honorees and voting is currently taking place for Academic All-America honors.
  • Northern Kentucky Athletics’ core values include both inclusiveness and community engagement. While the 2,909 hours of community service attributed to the athletic department last year are impressive, three of our teams in the last four years have partnered with Team IMPACT to truly impact the lives of three youth with chronic illnesses.

o   The baseball program first got the ball rolling when it signed Alex Murray.

o   Volleyball followed suit in January 2018 with the signing of Taylor and Leah Conrad and, most recently, softball signed Destiny Owen.

  • Volleyball senior Haley Libs is one of 10 national finalists for the Senior CLASS Award, an accolade aimed at honoring student-athletes for staying in school and excelling in the community, classroom, character and competition. Libs is a perfect 4.0 student-athlete in Exercise Science, who is also a three-time team captain and three-time All-Horizon League First Team performer.

o   Further, Libs makes annual trips to Norton’s Children’s Hospital, which treated her own pediatric leukemia, to support the youth currently hospitalized.

  • NKU’s student-athletes are also excelling in competition. Women’s soccer earned yet another top-3 regular-season Horizon League finish, while the volleyball program recently tied for second place in the Horizon League, its best finish in the brief Division I-era. Alex Willis was named the Horizon League Men’s Soccer Freshman of the Year after recording 16 goals, which was the third-most in the NCAA at the conclusion of the regular season and seven assists. And, Drew McDonald was named the Horizon League Preseason Player of the Year for the second year in a row.
  • NKU’s Lead Enterprise Architect, Kasilingham Vimalan was awarded the Rising Tech Stars Award.  This award honors IT professionals who are on the fast track to becoming the future technology leaders in our region. Lead Tribune Media Group, the publisher of Venue Magazine, Greater Cincinnati’s Lifestyle publication, and Lead Magazine, the publication for Business Executives, selected Vimalan for this award. Vimalan’s outstanding achievements were highlighted when he received this award at The Rising Star Awards Ceremony that took place at the comSpark Tech and Innovation Summit on September 18.
  • Kathleen Roberts partnered with Norse Advising in the design and delivery of a 5-module series on cultural competence for Master Advising Certification. The program will be scaled to include all administrative and academic units and eventually be developed into an online course.
  • To A Degree is the Gates Foundation’s postsecondary success podcast that highlights the people, institutions and organizations working to provide all students with a high-quality and affordable higher education experience.

o   The American Association of State Colleges and Universities (AASCU) collaborated with To A Degree and the Gates Foundation to capture the perspectives of campus leaders at its 2018 Annual Meeting in late October.

o   To A Degree recorded three podcasts at the meeting focusing on leadership and innovative solutions to improve equity and student success.

o   I had the pleasure of taking part in the “Keeping the Promise” podcast along with Shippensburg University of Pennsylvania President Laurie A. Carter and State University of New York at Fredonia President Virginia Schaefer Horvath.

That concludes my comments for today’s Board meeting.


Ashish K. Vaidya, Ph.D.
Northern Kentucky University
Nunn Drive
800 Lucas Administrative Center
Highland Heights, KY 41099
Phone: 859-572-5123
Fax: 859-572-6696