Edinboro University recognized for excellence in diversity

Edinboro University
Edinboro University was recognized for its 'outstanding commitment to diversity and inclusion' recently by 'INSIGHT Into Diversity' magazine.

The Spectator

Edinboro University was recognized for its “outstanding commitment to diversity and inclusion” with the 2014 Higher Education Excellence in Diversity (HEED) award from “INSIGHT Into Diversity” magazine.

The annual HEED award reflects Edinboro’s “exemplary diversity and inclusion initiatives” as well as its “demonstrated ability to embrace a broad definition of diversity on campus, including gender, race, ethnicity, veterans, people with disabilities, members of the LGBT community and all others.”  The University will be featured along with 82 other recipients in the November issue of “INSIGHT Into Diversity,” the oldest and largest diversity-focused publication in higher education.

“Diversity and inclusion work is about building capacity through partnerships and collaborations with individuals who go above and beyond to create and sustain a welcoming, respectful campus community,” said Valerie O. Hayes, Edinboro University’s Director of Social Equity and University Title IX Coordinator.  

“Our campus earned this distinction, and this award encourages us to continue our commitment to diversity as a key component of life on our campus.”

Shaquan Walker, an undergraduate pursuing dual majors in Sociology and Criminal Justice, who serves as a student member of the Edinboro University Council of Trustees, said he especially values key aspects of the university’s diversity efforts, including participation in a State System of Higher Education collaborative called the Frederick Douglass Institute, which promotes academic excellence, civic engagement and the understanding and appreciation of human diversity.

Walker said he also is inspired by Edinboro’s annual salute to graduating seniors from diverse backgrounds.

“One of my favorite times of the year is the ALANI (African American, Latino, Asian, Native American and International) ceremony and salute to graduates,” Walker said.

“As an African-American student, seeing others similar to yourself receive their ‘kente’ cloth from Vice President for Student Affairs Kahan Sablo is so moving and inspires me to keep pushing toward my degree that society expects me to not possess.”

Graduates wear the traditional African cloth as a colorful and distinctive stole over their black robes during commencement ceremonies.

Lenore Pearlstein, publisher of “INSIGHT Into Diversity” magazine, said the HEED award serves as a way to honor those institutions of higher education that recognize the importance of diversity and inclusion as part of their everyday campus culture. For more information about the 2014 HEED award, visit insightintodiversity.com.

For more information about Edinboro University, visit edinboro.edu.