Skip Navigation
Oklahoma State University

OSU receives prestigious national diversity award for 5th consecutive year

Wed, August 31, 2016
Higher Education Excellence in Diversity award

INSIGHT Into Diversity magazine publisher presents award at special campus event

For the fifth year in a row, Oklahoma State University is being recognized nationally for its commitment to diversity and inclusion with the 2016 Higher Education Excellence in Diversity award from INSIGHT Into Diversity magazine. OSU’s commitment to achieving excellence in diversity and inclusion will be featured in a spotlight article in the publication’s November issue. OSU is the only institution in the state recognized for multiple years with this prestigious national honor.

“OSU is honored to receive this recognition for a fifth straight year and to have the magazine’s publisher, Lenore Pearlstein, here to personally present this award,” said OSU President Burns Hargis. “I am proud and excited about our progress in making inclusion our culture at OSU, and the fact that students of color account for 30 percent of the current first-year class, which ties the all-time enrollment numbers in that category.”

Pearlstein presented the award at a special event on Wednesday at the OSU Student Union. A total of 83 schools were recognized this year by INSIGHT Into Diversity magazine, which is the oldest and largest diversity-focused publication 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 Pearlstein. ”Our standards are high, and we look for institutions where diversity and inclusion are woven into the work being accomplished every day across their campus.”

“OSU has exhibited a significant and sustained commitment to diversity and inclusion that is being recognized as a model for institutions around the state and across the nation to emulate,” said Dr. Jason F. Kirksey, vice president for institutional diversity and chief diversity officer at OSU. “As one of the few five-year recipients of the HEED Award, OSU continues to earn national distinction for our pursuit of inclusive excellence. We are passionate about broadening the spectrum of excellence at OSU and ensuring that every member of the university community is provided an opportunity to achieve their educational goals."

More than 70 diversity-related student organizations at OSU empower students to promote their heritage and become leaders. The university also supports K-12 programs that facilitate students’ ability to successfully transition to college.