Buffalo State College has received the 2019 Higher Education Excellence in Diversity (HEED) Award from INSIGHT Into Diversity magazine. This marks the seventh year in a row that Buffalo State has been named a HEED recipient. HEED is a national honor recognizing U.S. colleges and universities that demonstrate an outstanding commitment to diversity and inclusion.
Buffalo State will be featured, along with 95 other recipients, in the November 2019 issue of INSIGHT Into Diversity, the oldest and largest diversity-focused publication in higher education.
“Buffalo State has a long history of embracing diversity,” said Buffalo State College President Katherine Conway-Turner. “This year, we added two new initiatives that will ensure representation of a growingly diverse student body. First, we’ve introduced a bachelor’s degree in Africana studies. Second, we’ve hired three faculty members as part of SUNY’s Promoting Recruitment, Opportunity, Diversity, Inclusion, and Growth (PRODI-G) initiative. Its goal is to recruit and retain early to mid-career faculty from underrepresented groups. Buffalo State is the first SUNY institution to participate in PRODI-G.”
The New York State Education Department approved Buffalo State’s new multidisciplinary B.A. degree in August. Previously offered as a minor program only, the Africana studies major now gives students the opportunity to examine the contributions of African nations and the African diaspora to the global community. The new program is composed of 14 courses in political science, philosophy, anthropology, sociology, and English, including African American Literature to 1940, the Sociology of Race and Ethnicity, Race and Progress, and Hip-Hop Culture.
“We listened to our students, who have asked for additional diverse curricular choices that are engaging and prepare them for future success,” said Conway-Turner. “And I was happy to see that many of our faculty members were eager and prepared to teach courses within the program.”
Buffalo State’s other ongoing initiatives that celebrate diversity in and out classroom include the Diversity Dialogue Speakers Series; the “I Love Consent” campaign; the Anne Frank Project, an annual two-day social justice festival; and the Beyond Boundaries: Dare to Be Diverse film series.
Buffalo State also participates in numerous community partnerships through service-learning programs, along with the Global Book Project and the Community Academic Center. These initiatives assist underserved populations, including immigrants and refugees.
“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 Lenore Pearlstein, publisher of INSIGHT Into Diversity magazine. “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.”
More information about the 2019 HEED Award is available on the Insight Into Diversity website.
For more information about Buffalo State’s diversity efforts, please visit the Equity and Campus Diversity Office website.
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