Campus News

‘UK at the Half’: Jason Brooks on UK’s DEI Accolades

Pete Comparoni | UK Photo.
Pete Comparoni | UK Photo.

LEXINGTON, Ky. (Feb. 28, 2022) — For this “UK at the Half,” University of Kentucky Executive Director for Institutional Engagement Jason Brooks discusses the recent awards and recognitions UK has received for its efforts in diversity, equity and inclusion.

For the fifth year in a row, UK was named a Higher Education Excellence in Diversity (HEED) Award recipient and Diversity Champion by INSIGHT Into Diversity magazine. Only selected institutions — those that rank in the top tier of HEED Award recipients — receive the Diversity Champion designation.

“For us to be designated as a Diversity Champion means that we’re doing something right, and that we are continuously striving to be, what we consider, best in class,” Brooks said.

UK was also ranked on the Forbes list of "Best Employers for Diversity" in 2021. Partnering with market research company Statista, Forbes’ annual list recognizes businesses with at least 1,000 employees who demonstrate a strong commitment to inclusive workplace practices.

“People love the University of Kentucky, including myself,” Brooks said. “It’s the atmosphere, how we treat our employers, at a top-tier level appreciation. That’s us. That’s UK."

“UK at the Half” airs during halftime of each UK football and basketball game broadcast on the radio and is hosted by UK Public Relations and Marketing. To hear the “UK at the Half” interview, click the play button above.

The University of Kentucky is increasingly the first choice for students, faculty and staff to pursue their passions and their professional goals. In the last two years, Forbes has named UK among the best employers for diversity, and INSIGHT into Diversity recognized us as a Diversity Champion four years running. UK is ranked among the top 30 campuses in the nation for LGBTQ* inclusion and safety. UK has been judged a “Great College to Work for" three years in a row, and UK is among only 22 universities in the country on Forbes' list of "America's Best Employers."  We are ranked among the top 10 percent of public institutions for research expenditures — a tangible symbol of our breadth and depth as a university focused on discovery that changes lives and communities. And our patients know and appreciate the fact that UK HealthCare has been named the state’s top hospital for five straight years. Accolades and honors are great. But they are more important for what they represent: the idea that creating a community of belonging and commitment to excellence is how we honor our mission to be not simply the University of Kentucky, but the University for Kentucky.