PVM Honored with 2023 National Health Professions Higher Education Excellence in Diversity Award

Friday, October 20, 2023

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The Purdue University College of Veterinary Medicine has received the Health Professions Higher Education Excellence in Diversity (HEED) Award for the fourth consecutive year. Presented by INSIGHT Into Diversity magazine, the oldest and largest diversity-focused publication in higher education, the national award recognizes U.S. health colleges and universities that demonstrate an outstanding commitment to diversity and inclusion. As an award recipient, the college will be featured, along with 61 other Health Professions HEED Award recipients, in the November/December 2023 issue of INSIGHT Into Diversity magazine.

HEED Award graphic

“The Health Professions 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 Lenore Pearlstein, publisher of INSIGHT Into Diversity magazine. “We take a detailed approach to reviewing each application in deciding who will be named a Health Professions HEED Award recipient. Our standards are high, and we look for schools where diversity and inclusion are woven into the work being done every day across their campus.”

Purdue Veterinary Medicine assistant dean for diversity, equity and inclusion, Marsha Baker, said the college continues to advance the core values of DEI through evidence-based mentoring, teaching, research, hiring, and promotion, recruitment, and retention. “These efforts establish a solid foundation for ensuring that our college sustains a welcoming environment and actively values diversity, equity, and inclusion,” Baker said. “This recognition shows that we not only have outstanding programmatic initiatives, but that our approach to advancing diversity, equity, and inclusion is interwoven into all aspects of our missions of learning, discovery, and engagement.”

As a 2023 Health Professions HEED Award recipient the college was honored for multiple aspects of its commitment to valuing diversity, equity, and inclusion. Programs highlighted as part of the award selection process include:

  • Ongoing efforts to implement and monitor DEI initiatives, including the work of the Diversity Action Committee to foster the college’s successful implementation of the DEI Strategic Plan.
  • Creative initiatives launched and sustained through the college’s Office of Engagement, including the League of VetaHumanz, which provides access and support for underserved children as they pursue their dreams of becoming veterinary professionals; and Global Engagement programming that expands study abroad opportunities for DVM and Veterinary Nursing students by attracting funding to support student travel overseas.
  • The Vet Up! program that provides opportunities and support for equity-minded individuals from disadvantaged backgrounds to enter the veterinary profession and serve society by advancing public health, ensuring food safety, or serving rural areas.
  • Active partnerships with Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HCBU).
  • DEI training programs for faculty, staff, and students that include Learning Cafes, Mediation Training, and a Climate Survey.
  • The Certificate Program for Diversity and Inclusion in Veterinary Medicine that involves a unique combination of distance learning, community service, and reflective assignments to equip participants with the skills and understanding needed to foster inclusivity within their respective institutions.
  • The Purdue Post-Baccalaureate Research Education Program (PREP) for Translational Biomedical Sciences that fosters diversity in the biomedical sciences through a one-year post-baccalaureate program that provides in-depth research experience, graduate coursework, professional development, and career planning.
  • Utilization of a holistic admissions process that facilitates recruitment of historically underrepresented and first-generation students.
  • An active chapter of the student organization VOICE – “Veterinarians as One Inclusive Community for Empowerment.”

“The College of Veterinary Medicine has been a leader in developing and delivering innovative programming that is helping to expand diversity in the veterinary medical profession,” Baker said. “We are honored to receive this national award that spotlights the results of years of dedicated work aimed at making measurable progress as a college and as a health profession in being truly welcoming and supportive of everyone.” Out of the 61 Health Professions HEED Award recipients for 2023, the Purdue University College of Veterinary Medicine is one of only five veterinary schools and colleges chosen to receive the honor.

Writer(s): Kevin Doerr | pvmnews@purdue.edu

Category: Diversity, Our Impact

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