Leah Seupersad, 404-413-1354
ATLANTA—Georgia State University was recently recognized as a Role Model for diversity by Minority Access Inc. during its 11th National Role Models Conference, one of the nation’s first and most prestigious disparities conferences.
The university earned the honor for its ability to successfully recruit, retain and produce underrepresented biomedical and other scientific researchers.
“People are beginning to recognize us as a leader in diversity from all aspects, not just from how many students we have in our student population, but how many students we have in our programs focused on the sciences and how we deal with diversity of those students from an inclusion and engagement perspective,” said Linda J. Nelson, assistant vice president for opportunity development and diversity education planning, who accepted the award in September in Las Vegas.
Created out of a partnership with the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, the Role Model Conference is an annual event held by the non-profit educational organization to support individuals, academic institutions, federal, state, and local government agencies, and various corporations to diversify campuses and work sites by improving the recruitment, retention and enhancement of minorities. The organization’s National Role Model’s Project addresses the need to replenish research, science and technology positions being vacated by a retiring workforce to ensure the nation’s long- term competitive edge.
At the event, Nelson said Georgia State was identified for the honor for its ability to show that diversity is valued among faculty, staff and students, which is highlighted in the university’s strategic plan, campus surveys that address climate issues, scholarship which directly impacts diversity, and a close look at representation, inclusion and intergroup relations and institutional leadership.
Other universities honored at the conference included California State University–San Bernardino, Clemson University, Indiana University–Bloomington, North Carolina State University, Northern Illinois University, University of New Mexico, University of California at Los Angeles, University of California at Santa Barbara and Virginia State University.
“Georgia State is approaching diversity from a strategic perspective and we’re not just satisfied in letting it happen,” Nelson said. “This conference provided an opportunity to network with others who are committed to increasing the pool of scholars and researchers from underrepresented groups. It also provides a wonderful opportunity for students to network with other students and scientists around the country, as well as building a pipeline from undergraduate to graduate school.”
Published Nov. 4, 2010