Skip to body

Academic Achievement

CWU Receives Prestigious HEED Award for Excellence in Diversity

Central Washington University is a 2014 recipient of the prestigious INSIGHT Into Diversity Higher Education Excellence in Diversity (HEED) Award. CWU is one of only 83 institutions nationwide, and the only four-year institution in Washington State, to receive the award.

The HEED Award recognizes colleges and universities that demonstrate an outstanding commitment to diversity and inclusion. INSIGHT Into Diversity is the oldest and largest diversity magazine and website in higher education today.

“This award highlights our efforts in enhancing diversity at CWU,” said Delores (Kandee) Cleary, chief diversity officer and chair of the Sociology Department. “We are proud and honored to be selected.  While we continue to work to ensure CWU is welcoming to everyone, this award gives us a chance to take a breath and recognize all that we have accomplished.”

Currently, minority students make up roughly 25 percent of CWU’s enrollment and the university was recently named one of the top 50 LGBT-friendly universities in the nation.

The award, open to all colleges and universities throughout the United States, measures an institution’s level of achievement and intensity of commitment in regard to broadening diversity and inclusion on campus through initiatives, programs and outreach; student recruitment, retention, and completion; and hiring practices for faculty and staff.

CWU communication alumna Veronica Gomez-Vilchis of the Office of Equal Opportunity and Professional Development, took the lead in submitting the application for the award.

“Veronica worked tirelessly to bring people together to talk about their diversity work,” said Staci Sleigh-Layman, Human Resources director-at-large,. “She collected and compiled the information into a readable format, and did much of this independently, without a lot of guidance. She produced an excellent submission.” 

Gomez-Vilchis, who also has been a faculty member in Communication and program coordinator of Bridges, has worked in HR for the past two years. She focuses on recruitment, hiring and professional development.

The HEED Award is the only national recognition honoring colleges and universities that exhibit outstanding efforts and success in the area of diversity and inclusion throughout their campuses.

For more information about the 2014 HEED award, visit www.insightintodiversity.com.

Media Contact: Valerie Chapman-Stockwell, Public Affairs, 509-963-1518, valeriec@cwu.edu

Take the Next Step to Becoming a Wildcat.

Admissions@cwu.edu