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WVU receives 2019 Higher Education Excellence in Diversity award

Release from WVU Today:

MORGANTOWN, W.Va. — West Virginia University’s commitment to diversity and inclusion has been recognized by INSIGHT Into Diversity magazine with the 2018 Higher Education Excellence in Diversity for the fourth consecutive year.

Vice President of Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Meshea Poore delivers WVU’s first State of Diversity address at Erickson Alumni Center. (WVUPhoto/Brian Persinger) WVUPhoto/Brian Persinger

“As we attract an increasingly diverse faculty, staff and student body, we understand that there is always more work to do in order to make our university a more inclusive community. This type of recognition reminds us that we are making good progress,” said Meshea Poore, vice president of Diversity, Equity and Inclusion. “Receiving the HEED Award provides more motivation to stay engaged in the day to day work to make our campus the exceptional place it is to live, to learn, and to engage in scholarship. 

“This award is for all the people away from the spotlight who make West Virginia University a place where we can bring our whole selves, our best selves, every day and be successful.”

The magazine cited two WVU programs as examples of its efforts: the Health Sciences and Technology Academy and the Chancellor’s Scholar program, nationally recognized programs designed to recruit and retain underrepresented students for undergraduate and graduate study respectively.

HSTA reaches across the state to identify and engage students from underrepresented communities while they are still in middle school. The mentorship and support provided through this program propels these students through their undergraduate program and all the way through professional school in the health sciences. 

The Chancellor’s Scholars program is a partnership between WVU and the WV Higher Education Policy Commission. In conjunction with its companion program, the Colloquium for Underrepresented Aspiring Doctoral Candidates, it provides financial and other support to create pathways to complete a doctoral program.  In addition to supporting the individual success of these doctoral candidates, this program serves the larger goal of diversifying the ranks of faculty in higher education.

“The HEED Award process consists of a comprehensive and rigorous application that includes questions relating to the recruitment and retention of students and employees — and best practices for both — continued leadership support for diversity, and other aspects of campus diversity and inclusion,” said INSIGHT Publisher Lenore Pearlstein. “We take a detailed approach to reviewing each application in deciding who will be named a HEED Award recipient. Our standards are high, and we look for institutions where diversity and inclusion are woven into the work being done every day across their campus.”

West Virginia University will be featured, along with 94 other recipients, in the magazine’s November 2019 issue.

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