Public Administration Students Reach Beyond the Classroom

In the MPA Capstone class, students work on projects that have "potential impacts beyond the classroom," usually in partnership with government and nonprofit organizations.  This semester is no exception. 

Tom Jacobs, for example, is working with Planning and Development Services (PDS) of Kenton County to complete an application for a $10,000 grant.  If selected, the PDS will use the funds toward an education and empowerment campaign related to bicycling and walking. Promoting multi-modal transportation is a priority in the county’s recently adopted comprehensive plan, called Direction 2030, as it can reduce traffic, enhance mobility and improve public health.

Jennifer Holladay is helping Skyward (formerly known as Vision 2015) with developing a database of arts and cultural resources in Northern Kentucky.  This "creative placemaking" database will list and describe places, people and activities that add to the region’s vibrancy including statues, murals, other public art, museums, music venues, performance organizations, community building organizations, festivals and other events. The longer-term vision for this project is that other NKU classes or students may eventually add photos and images to the database and/or create a NKY creative placemaking app.

Chenee Young is working with the Greater Cincinnati Homeless Coalition to develop an online tool for individuals to assess their beliefs about people who are homeless or living in poverty, which can shape their attitudes and actions toward these populations.  The self-assessment tool will consist of five to ten multiple-choice items related to reasons that people are homeless or living in poverty, statistics about affordable housing, and other related issues.  The tool will immediately provide each participant with a score of right answers relative to wrong answers, which may be based on negative stereotypes.  It will also offer accurate information and resources to help educate participants on homelessness and poverty in this region.

For more information about the MPA program at Northern Kentucky University, please visit: