True to her roots: How Centre set Mya Price on a path of leadership and service

by Matt Overing

Mya Price '13

One Centre College motto rings particularly true for Mya Price ’13.

Learning, leadership and service have all played integral roles in Price’s postgraduate opportunities — from earning her doctorate in May from the University of the District of Columbia, to serving as director of the Food Security Equity Impact Fund at Feeding America.

Price recognized her passions thanks in part to a Centre Abroad experience in Costa Rica, where she learned more about global food inequalities.

“My senior year, I didn’t really know what my next steps were … I just knew I wanted to help people and support people,” Price said. 

Price found a job with Feeding America through Child Hunger Corps, a national service program designed to help serve children and their families. She worked with God’s Pantry food bank in Lexington, Kentucky, helping child nutrition programs across the state — and after that, she knew she had found her calling.

A native of Lexington, Price helped God’s Pantry set up the first high school food pantry in the state of Kentucky at Bryan Station High School in her hometown. 

Mya Price '13
Mya Price '13, left, currently serves as director of Feeding America's Food Security Equity Impact Fund. 

“Being able to start that pantry program to serve high schoolers and their families with food insecurity, I still have those pictures from that experience. That’s probably one of my proudest moments,” she said. 

After her initial work with Feeding America, Price earned her master’s degree in community and leadership development at the University of Kentucky. Soon after, she received the call from Feeding America to join their offices in Washington, D.C., as director of the Food Security Equity Impact Fund, which aims to grow community-driven solutions to fighting hunger. Since 2021, the fund has invested more than $20 million across the United States.

Again, Price drew on her time at Centre — and in the community around the College — to help her in those professional experiences.

“I love Centre so much — it’s so immersive, and it allows students to explore their journey. Basically, you’re given a menu of options to think about where you want to go in your life and your future,” Price said. “There’s so much I learned and gained from speaking to individuals who don’t look like me and have different perspectives. In Costa Rica, that’s when I understood that there are so many communities that have needs and perspectives that I don’t.” 

It was that immersive experience abroad that turned Price toward the agriculture sector of food insecurity. 

“Growing up, my mom would always take me to the farmers’ market. I saw pantries in my neighborhood where individuals had easy access to food,” she said. “If we look across the national scale, there are communities of color who are disproportionately impacted by food insecurity and, even within my own family, I saw that. I have lived experience. I've been able to go off and see other cultures and how they live, and I want to be able to put my foot in the agricultural world to see what I can do in Kentucky at the local level, but then also at the national level.”

Along with real-world experience, Centre prepared Price as a leader — she said speaking at convocations at the College and getting involved in the local community through her sorority gave her the confidence to present and share at national conferences on food insecurity and more.

“I am a first-generation college student with a bachelor’s degree, master’s and now Ph.D.,” Price said. “What has always inspired me is that if you’re passionate about something, don’t allow your past, how you were born or raised, your family situation, to define where you want to go. For me, it means a lot to not only represent myself on this journey but to be able to represent and support my family and my community.”