Versailles, Ky.—Frontier Nursing University (FNU) received the 2020 Health Professions Higher Education Excellence in Diversity (HEED) Award from INSIGHT Into Diversity magazine, the oldest and largest diversity-focused publication in higher education. This is the third consecutive year that FNU has received this prestigious award.
As a recipient of the annual Health Professions HEED Award — a national honor recognizing U.S. colleges and universities that demonstrate an outstanding commitment to diversity and inclusion — FNU will be featured, along with 45 other recipients, in the December 2020 issue of INSIGHT Into Diversity magazine.
“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 detailed approach to review 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 done every day across their campus.”
“Being selected as a recipient of the prestigious HEED Award for a third consecutive year is an incredible honor for Frontier Nursing University,” said FNU President Dr. Susan Stone. “Amidst the current social justice movement in our country, it is imperative that FNU serve as an agent for change. We know that culturally competent care improves health outcomes and begins with a more diverse healthcare system. We are proud to be taking a leadership role in this movement by educating an increasingly diverse student body, but fully recognize that we have much to learn and areas in which to improve. The HEED Award confirms that we are continuing to move in the right direction and to make meaningful progress.”
FNU’s commitment to emphasizing and valuing diversity and inclusion was formally instituted with the creation of the Diversity Impact Program in 2010. The following year, FNU held its first annual Diversity Impact Conference. Held each summer, the Diversity Impact Conference opens the door for nurse practitioner and nurse-midwifery students plus faculty and staff to foster collaborative discussions, address health disparities, and find proactive solutions to improve health among underrepresented and marginalized groups.
In 2017, FNU established the position of Chief Diversity and Inclusion Officer (CDIO), which sits on the President’s Cabinet. Today, the Diversity and Inclusion Office has grown to include Chief Diversity and Inclusion Officer Dr. Geraldine Young, Diversity and Inclusion Coordinator Chris Turley, and Assistant Director of Diversity and Inclusion Devon Peterika.
FNU’s diversity initiatives span all facets of the university, but one of the most telling and important data points is the percentage of students of color enrolled at FNU. In 2009, that number was 9 percent. In 2020, it has grown to 24 percent.
About Frontier Nursing University:
The mission of FNU is to provide accessible nurse-midwifery and nurse practitioner education to prepare competent, entrepreneurial, ethical, and compassionate leaders in primary care to serve all individuals with an emphasis on women and families in diverse, rural, and underserved populations. FNU offers graduate Nurse-Midwifery and Nurse-Practitioner distance education programs that can be pursued full- or part-time with the student’s home community serving as the classroom. Degrees and options offered include Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP), Master of Science in Nursing (MSN) or Post-Graduate Certificates. To learn more about FNU and the programs and degrees offered, please visit Frontier.edu.