MIT Receives National Recognition from the Hispanic Association of Colleges and Universities

Published in MIT News on October 29, 2015, by Elizabeth Durant, Office of the Dean for Undergraduate Education

The Institute tops a cadre of 105 schools for “extraordinary efforts” in advancing the association’s mission.

For MIT junior Luzdary Ruelas, being selected to attend the national conference of the Hispanic Association of Colleges and Universities (HACU) over Columbus Day weekend was thrill enough. Ruelas was one of 10 students who attended the conference, along with associate dean and director of the Office of Minority Education (OME) DiOnetta Jones Crayton. After the students gathered at Logan Airport for the Miami-bound flight, Crayton surprised them with some news: “She told us right before we got on the plane that MIT was receiving an award, so it was pretty exciting!” Ruelas says.

MIT receives national HACU awardCrayton was surprised by the recognition, as well, when she was notified this summer. “We didn’t even know we were eligible for the award,” she says. The award names MIT as the 2015 Outstanding Associate HACU-Member Institution, given in honor of “the extraordinary efforts and success of an institution that has excelled in advancing the mission and goals of HACU.” MIT was selected from a pool of 105 HACU associate member institutions from 28 states and the District of Columbia. (Associate membership — one of four categories of membership — includes institutions that have at least 10 percent Hispanic enrollment; among all membership categories, HACU has over 480 member institutions.)

In her acceptance speech, Crayton expressed how “deeply grateful and humbled we are to receive the Outstanding Associate-Member Institution Award. MIT has a long-standing commitment to diversity, and this award is both a testimony to our efforts and a challenge to us as well … a challenge to not only sustain but to surpass the standards that we have set for the Institute in the area of diversity and inclusion...

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