Alex Geli

Millersville University is surely taking heed when it comes to diversity.

For the third year in a row, Millersville has received INSIGHT into Diversity magazine’s Higher Education Excellence in Diversity Award (HEED). The award—the only one of its kind—recognizes colleges and universities around the nation who strive to adopt and nurture a diverse and inclusive campus.

Hiram Martinez, former assistant to the president for social equity and diversity—and now director of the Center for Student Involvement & Leadership—was quoted in Millersville’s Exchange last year when the award was given out for the second consecutive year.

Millersville received Higher Education Excellence in Diversity Award.

“The Office of Social Equity & Diversity aims to provide strategic diversity leadership for campus equity and diversity issues through collaboration and partnerships that aim to infuse diversity principles and best practices into all aspects of University life,” Martinez said. “The HEED Award recognizes Millersville University’s multi-dimensional social equity, diversity and inclusion framework that focuses on the interrelated dimensions of access and success, education and scholarship, campus climate and inter/intra group relations, and institutional viability and vitality.”

The university adorns groups such as Black Student Union, Society on Latino Affairs and the NAACP of Millersville, among others.

One way they get their message out is the arts. They have put on plenty of events at the Ware Center and Visual and Performing Arts Center, including a speech from producer, actor and music artist Tatyana Ali Tuesday, Sept. 16.

Millersville has teamed up with Frederick Douglass Celebration of Black Culture Program to host various speakers, including Ali, but none more polarizing as Rev. Al Sharpton last spring.

Millersville also is home to three President’s Commissions: the Commission of Cultural Diversity and Inclusion, the Commision on the Status of Women and the newly created Commission of on Gender and Sexual Diversity.

In athletics, Millersville was called out by a women’s advocacy group last spring for the school’s violation of Title IX, ensuring equal opportunities for men and women in sports.
Since then, the university has increased awareness around campus—not to mention, the field hockey team is the top-ranked Division II squad in the nation. Martinez heads that pursuit as the Title IX Coordinator as well.

Martinez also mentioned other vital pieces of the diversity puzzle in another article written by theExchange.

“MU has a long, rich history of promoting social equity, diversity and inclusion on campus and in the workforce,” he said. “This is evidenced by the many successes and accomplishments we have shared as a campus community through the recruitment and hiring of diverse senior administrators such as former Millersville president, Dr. Francine G. McNairy; former assistant to the president for social equity, Patricia Hopson-Shelton; interim vice president of student affairs, Michelle Perez; vice president of advancement, Dr. Aminta Breaux; provost and vice president for academic affairs, Dr. Vilas Prabhu; and present and former faculty members such as Hazel I. Jackson, Dr. Rosario Caminero, Dr. Melvin Allen and Dr. Rita Smith Wade-El, and the list goes on.”

And so will Millersville’s mission to accommodate any and all who come aboard the Marauders’ ship. The university is scheduled to host the Pennsylvania State System of Higher Education Diversity Summit from Nov. 12 to the 14.