As the nation’s largest higher education system, the State University of New York not only sets an example for its 64 campuses to follow, but sets the standard of higher education operations. Last year, New York Governor Cuomo touted SUNY as New York’s “economic driver” and in his 2013 State of the State Address, named education and jobs as “New York’s one-two punch”.
SUNY is now more able than ever before to deliver on the high standards set for it by diversifying its student body to record levels to increase access.
Late last year, SUNY and the College at Brockport were announced winners of the first ever Higher Education Excellence in Diversity (HEED) award. SUNY and the College at Brockport are featured along with 46 other recipients in the December 2012 issue of INSIGHT Into Diversity Magazine.
“Minority enrollment of our first-time, full-time freshmen is now at 29 percent – an all time high, and is the result of a 44 percent increase in access to SUNY in the last 5 years.”
“Aligning SUNY’s strategic planning goals with the diverse communities the system serves has helped us recognize new opportunities to build strong pathways between diversity and academic excellence,” said SUNY Associate Provost & Associate Vice Chancellor Carlos N. Medina. “It is deeply rewarding to see SUNY be nationally recognized for its diversity efforts, something we’re very passionate about.”
“Receiving [the HEED] award is truly inspiring, particularly as this is its inaugural year,” said Joel Frater, PhD, assistant provost for diversity for the College at Brockport. “We’re proud of what we have accomplished on our campus but we know that more work remains.”
INSIGHT Into Diversity magazine selected award winners based on their diversity and inclusion initiatives, including all aspects of diversity such as gender, race, ethnicity, veterans, people with disabilities, and members of the LGBT community.
“We hope the HEED award serves as a reminder that diversity and inclusion must remain priorities in the 21st century higher education landscape,” said Lenore Pearlstein, publisher of INSIGHT Into Diversity magazine.”
Through its various programs, the SUNY Office of Diversity, Equity and Inclusion not only celebrates diversity as a reflection of SUNY’s strategic mission, but leverages the diversity of all its communities to expand the horizons of academic excellence, research and scholarship, affirmative action and inclusion throughout the university system.
Maxwell is the Coordinator of Digital Engagement for The State University of New York.