​Together Frankfort

Kentucky State University Campus, Frankfort KY

The University and its Community -

Some background

On a bluff in Kentucky’s capital city of Frankfort rests Kentucky State University (KSU), one of the nation’s 101 HBCUs (Historically Black Colleges & Universities, including public & private institutions). Understanding the history of both these communities is essential to understanding the challenges.


1.  Kentucky's Frankfort and Franklin County; and, 

2.  Kentucky State University) provides an important

This historical framework helps assess the current town-gown connections and opportunities to strengthen that relationship.

​​2010 - 2020:  A Decade of Major Changes

City of Frankfort, Franklin County,

& Kentucky State University

During the community’s past decade, not only that of Frankfort and Franklin County but also KSU as well, fundamental changes have played out to create uncertainty, challenges, and opportunities.

  • From 2016 - 2020, Frankfort’s downtown infrastructure experienced wide-reaching destruction and redesign.

  • In the November 2018 elections, citizens voted new city commissioners and new county magistrates into the community’s decision-making processes.

  • At KSU, three different Presidents – two permanent and one interim – were challenged to guide the institution through times of fiscal uncertainty and community change.

Collectively, these patterns have provided the groundwork and necessity for all community entities to work in partnership – a more carefully defined partnership toward a more stable, secure, and prosperous future. These collective experiences - issues and challenges - have undergirded community emphasis on more cooperative economic, social, and community development.