Community-Driven Strategic Planning: How Northern Kentucky University Leveraged Student-Centered Design to Build an Inclusive Strategic Planning Process

Located in the suburbs of northern Kentucky, just minutes away from Cincinnati, Northern Kentucky University (NKU) serves over 15,000 students from across the state and beyond. In 2018, while celebrating its 50-year anniversary and closing out its current 6-year strategic plan, the college welcomed a new president with a bold vision. Feeling a sense of urgency to improve the student experience and increase outcomes, President Ashish Vaidya challenged the college to reframe its thinking about who the institution serves and how they design programs, services, and learning experiences to meet their students where they are.

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