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Dear Colleagues:

I write to update you on the progress being made toward our strategic framework building process. The important step of selecting the Core Team has been finalized. These individuals came highly recommended as representatives of some of the most important constituencies of NKU. The team is comprised of the following members:

  • Lisa Blank – System Director of Organization Development & Education, St. Elizabeth Healthcare; Alumni representative
  • Dr. George Carpten – Lecturer of Trumpet, School of the Arts
  • Taylor Gagne – Undergraduate Student, Accounting & Sports Business major
  • Dr. Douglas Hume – Chair, Department of Sociology, Anthropology & Philosophy
  • Dr. Kevin Kirby – Dean, College of Informatics
  • Dr. Caroline Macke – Associate Professor, Department of Counseling, Social Work & Leadership
  • Sue Murphy-Angel – Senior Operations Coordinator, College of Informatics; Staff Congress President
  • Kadori Ngirabakunzi – Graduate student, Nursing & Psychiatric Mental Health Nurse Practitioner
  • Kara Williams – Founder, Marketing Collective; Community representative
  • Dr. Matthew Zacate – Professor, Department of Physics, Geology & Engineering Technology; Faculty Senate President

The Core Team has been engaged in training workshops and they have already demonstrated their ability to be insightful, dedicated and creative thinkers who will help facilitate and develop our next strategic framework. I would like to thank them for their participation and look forward to working closely with the team. Throughout this process we will solicit your input and feedback.

The Resource/Advisory Team is also close to being finalized. I want to thank those of you who submitted names and nominations to serve on this important group. It is an impressive list of individuals who will provide expert support to the Core Team throughout the process.

Last Friday, the Cabinet, deans, chairs, and the leaders from Faculty Senate, Staff Congress and SGA, as well other key campus leaders gathered with the Strategic Framework Core Team for the annual fall leadership retreat. Part of the day featured panels of business leaders and current students who discussed their perceptions of what NKU is now and what we can be in the future. These two groups shared their perspectives, hopes and aspirations in a candid and thoughtful manner.  What struck me in particular was that all of these individuals care deeply about NKU and are committed to doing whatever it takes to ensure that we can meet our promise of putting our students first and making a lasting impact on our region.  

While the leadership retreat provided us with a glimpse of what is to come, the exciting step of announcing the public kick-off is here. We will begin by hosting an open forum for students, faculty and staff on Monday, October 1 from 3:30 – 4:30 p.m. in the Budig Theater. I will begin the forum with some quick introductory remarks and share details about how we will gather input over the coming weeks. I also want to spend time hearing from you about what we can improve upon to close the achievement gap relative to access, completion and career and community success, as well as any creative ideas you have that could aid in ensuring our success in the future.

The Core Team and I are looking forward to hearing from you. Additional information about a series of TalkShops (combination of a focus group and a workshop), a survey, and a website that will serve as the public face of this process will be forthcoming.  


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