Parker Kain is hard-working, energetic and passionate about Northern Kentucky University, and he’s made his mark in numerous ways since arriving on campus.
Kain founded the Honors Student Association to help Honors College students like himself feel connected to the college’s core values. Through an Advanced Research in Industrial Careers math class, he worked with doctors at Cincinnati Children’s Hospital Medical Center to predict the likelihood of often-fatal chronic kidney disease in children with acute kidney injury. And he’s been involved with NKU’S STEM Ambassadors and College of Informatics Ambassadors.
And, according to him, it’s all because of the distinguished scholarship he received to NKU. “It’s been life-changing,” he says. “It meant a full ride for me for college. I didn’t have to worry about debt, housing or food, and it’s allowed me to focus so much more on my studies and being involved on campus.
“I don’t think I would have been able to do all those things had I not received the scholarship. I would have been worried about working.”
While his scholarship made it possible for him to do college on his terms, it was the Honors College that allowed him to craft a college experience that impacted him and created opportunities for a bright tomorrow.
“I saw it as an opportunity to step outside of my comfort zone,” says the Data Science and Statistics double major. “In STEM majors, you take a lot of tech classes and work with a lot of tech people, and I wanted to work with people who weren’t just in my major. I heard that the Honors program was small class sizes, discussion-based lecture—things like that. So I checked it out and loved it.
“The Honors College has helped to round me out and prepare me for what I want to do after college, both in helping to develop my programming skills and my communication skills with people that aren’t like me and have different backgrounds than I do.”
The culmination of his skill development took place across the river in Cincinnati, where Kain did two internships with 84.51°, Kroger’s data-analysis company, working alongside area data science professionals to put customers at the center of the grocer’s offerings. He’ll return to the company after graduation, too, as his education and internships netted him a full-time data scientist position with 84.51°.
But even with a promising future in front of him, Kane is still thinking about NKU and how he’ll stay engaged with the university and the student body after he graduates.
“I want to be involved in alumni stuff here,” he says, “and I know that at 84.51˚ recruiting is led by regular employees—it’s not led by HR. So I definitely want to help with getting more NKU students over to 84.51˚.”