Hevin Ramsey

Hevin Ramsey felt a pressure to succeed as a Black student who was the lone member of the University of Louisville’s photography program.

She relied on UofL’s resources, faculty and staff to get her through her toughest challenge—a comprehensive review of all she had learned—leading the way to a bachelor of fine arts from the Hite Institute of Art and Design in the College of Arts & Sciences.

“UofL helped me pass my review and graduate this fall because of the fantastic people … who played a significant role in who I am as an artist and as a future alumnus of UofL,” Ramsey said.

“Althea,” an image from Ramsey’s BFA thesis.

Ramsey, a Woodford R. Porter Scholar, worked at the independent student newspaper, The Louisville Cardinal, and as a student assistant at Ekstrom Library. Read more about her Fall BFA Thesis Exhibition here.

Asked about her favorite class, she said her experience in a directed study working on a PhotoVoice project with Professor Mary Carothers of the Hite Institute made a profound impact on her.

The project focused on a Metro United Way/Russell Place of Promise guaranteed income program called YALift! Ramsey and other artists reflected on the meaning of guaranteed income in their work. Called “Take this!” the project included narratives to go with their imagery.

“Paring narratives with imagery greatly influenced my BFA track,” Ramsey said, “which solidified my love for UofL. If I had not gone here, I would have never met Mary Carothers or participated in the PhotoVoice project. It was an experience I will never forget.”

The experience also served as inspiration for her future higher education goals: Ramsey hopes to someday return to UofL for a Master of Fine Arts degree or an individualized major in visual sociology.

Ramsey, of Louisville, said her family has close ties to the university and she feels it has evolved along with the city. Being accepted at UofL was a “dream come true,” she said.

“I loved visiting different places that integrate the community and the university, such as the MFA building in Portland and the Cressman Center,” she said.

After graduation, Ramsey plans to open a small business focused on film photography and crochet projects.