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Northeastern receives award for commitment to diversity and inclusion

May 6, 2016 - BOSTON, MA. - Northeastern University celebrated its 114th Commencement on May 6, 2016. President Joseph E. Aoun led the undergraduate ceremony, which was held at TD Garden in Boston. Secretary of State John Kerry delivered the Commencement address. Northeastern conferred honorary degrees upon a distinguished group of influential figures: Retired Maj. Gen. Charles Frank Bolden Jr., the administrator of NASA; Susan Hockfield, former president of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and president-elect of the American Association for the Advancement of Science; and Thomas McCarthy, an award-winning director, screenwriter, and actor whose most recent film, Spotlight, won the 2016 Oscar for Best Picture. Photo by Billie Weiss for Northeastern University

Northeastern University has received the 2016 Higher Education Excellence in Diversity Award from INSIGHT Into Diversity magazine, the oldest and largest diversity-focused publication in higher education.

The HEED Award is the only national honor for U.S. colleges and universities that demonstrate an outstanding commitment to diversity and inclusion. Northeastern is one of just 83 higher education institutions—and the only private institution in New England—to receive the award this year.

Institutions are selected “based on their exemplary diversity and inclusion initiatives that focus on all aspects of diversity, including gender, race, ethnicity, veterans, people with disabilities, and members of the LGBTQ community.”

The selection process also focuses on the recruitment and retention of students and employees—and best practices for both—continued leadership support for diversity. “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,” said Lenore Pearlstein, publisher of the magazine.

Northeastern’s commitment to diversity and inclusion spans a wide range of efforts and initiatives—from a diverse student body to the university’s increasingly globalized campus and programs, to programs focused on recruiting, retaining, and advancing a diverse population of faculty and staff, through fostering an environment where diverse viewpoints can create intellectual dialogues. A new website serves as a primary portal to information about these efforts.

In a message to the Northeastern community on Tuesday, President Joseph E. Aoun noted that Northeastern is ideally positioned to create a diverse, inclusive model to which society can aspire, “because we are a community of action” that is deeply engaged with the world.

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