RVCC Receives National Award For Diversity Initiatives

For the fourth time, Raritan Valley Community College has been honored with the 2017 Higher Education Excellence in Diversity (HEED) Award from INSIGHT Into Diversity magazine, the oldest and largest diversity-focused publication in higher education.

As a recipient of the annual HEED Award — a national honor recognizing U.S. colleges and universities that demonstrate an outstanding commitment to diversity and inclusion — RVCC will be featured, along with 79 other recipients, in the November issue ofINSIGHT Into Diversity magazine. RVCC is the only New Jersey college to be honored this year.

The College also was honored with the HEED award for its diversity efforts in 2012, 2014 and 2015. In addition, Richeleen Dashield, Dean of Multicultural Affairs, received INSIGHT Into Diversity’s 2014 Diversity Visionary Award, and Dr. Patrice Gouveia Marks, RVCC’s Dean of Liberal Arts, Accreditation Liaison Officer, was honored with the 2017 Giving Back Award from INSIGHT Into Diversitymagazine.

“The 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 holistic approach to reviewing each application in deciding who will be named a HEED Award recipient. 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.”

RVCC’s College’s Office of Multicultural Affairs provides diversity programs annually to 5,000 students, faculty, staff and community members through the Heritage Series of lectures and cultural programs. These include the Kente Ceremony, Diversity Fair, MLK Community Partner breakfast, and Cultural Shock.

Some of the College’s many community outreach and co-curriculum programs related to diversity initiatives include:
• Paul Robeson Institute for Leadership, Ethics and Social Justice and its 26-year-old Paul Robeson Youth Achievement Award program, which celebrates African American middle and high school scholars.
• Malcolm Bernard Historically Black Colleges and Universities College and Transfer Fair, which serves 1,300 NJ high school students.
• CRECER program, which helps to prepare Latino high school students for transition to college and career readiness exploration.
• From Boys to Men Conference, a partnership with the New Brunswick (NJ) Alumni Chapter of Kappa Alpha Psi Fraternity, Inc., which empowers Black and Latino high school students to become lifelong learners and to increase civic engagement.
• Sanofi Corporate Mentor Program at RVCC, which helps first-generation and under-represented students to navigate the collegiate and professional worlds.
• Institute for Holocaust and Genocide Studies, with its annual Learning Through Experience Program, which educates thousands of area middle school and high school students about the dangers of bigotry and hatred.
• Sister to Sister and Brothers Helping Brothers Network, which provides a supportive environment to improve academic success, student satisfaction, retention and graduation rates for students of color through a wide range of services.

The College also has a number of diverse student clubs and organizations including the Alliance, Association of Black Faculty and Staff, Black Student Alliance, Diversity Council, International Student Association, Orgullo Latino, Filipino PEACE, Muslim Student Association, United Caribbean Students, and Women’s Center.

For more information about the 2017 HEED Award, visit www.insightintodiversity.com.

INSIGHT Into Diversity magazine is the oldest and largest diversity publication in higher education today and is known for its annual HEED Award, the only award recognizing colleges and universities for outstanding diversity and inclusion efforts across their campuses. In addition to its online job board, INSIGHT Into Diversity presents timely, thought-provoking news and feature stories on matters of diversity and inclusion across higher education and beyond. Articles include interviews with innovators and experts, as well as profiles of best practices and exemplary programs. Readers will also discover career opportunities that connect job seekers with institutions and businesses that embrace a diverse and inclusive workforce. Current, archived, and digital issues of INSIGHT Into Diversity magazine are available online at www.insightintodiversity.com.

Raritan Valley Community College’s main campus is located at 118 Lamington Road in Branchburg, NJ. Serving Somerset and Hunterdon County residents for close to 50 years, RVCC is an educational and cultural center that is nationally recognized for its innovative programming, service to the community and environmental leadership. The College offers more than 90 associate degrees and certificates, as well as career training, professional development, and adult and youth personal enrichment courses. RVCC is committed to offering a quality and affordable education through effective teaching, liaisons with the community’s businesses, and state-of-the-art technology. For further information, visit www.raritanval.edu.