Campus News

UK Named a 2022 'Best Employer for Diversity' by Forbes

Pete Comparoni | UK Photo.

LEXINGTON, Ky. (April 26, 2022) — The University of Kentucky has been ranked on the Forbes list of "Best Employers for Diversity" in 2022.

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. 

“The University of Kentucky is proud to be listed among the nation’s best employers for diversity. As one of Kentucky’s largest employers, we have a responsibility to lead the state in diversifying our workforce and supporting employees from historically underserved communities. This recognition speaks to the commitment of so many individuals across our community who know the power of a more diverse and equitable institution,” said UK President Eli Capilouto. “We look forward to supporting this critical work.”

Over 60,000 U.S. employees were surveyed and asked to evaluate companies based on four different criteria: 

  • Direct recommendations: Employees were asked to give their opinions on a series of statements regarding age, gender, ethnicity, disability, LGBTQIA+ and general diversity in their current workplace. The recommendations of women, elders and ethnic minorities were weighted higher than the non-minority groups.
  • Indirect Recommendations: Participants were also given the chance to evaluate other employers in their respective industries that stand out either positively or negatively with regard to diversity. Only the recommendations of minority groups were considered.
  • Diversity Among Top Executives/Board.
  • Diversity Engagement Indicators were also part of the evaluation.

“To me, this is the greatest indicator of progress,” said Vice President Katrice Albert. "I am thrilled to have the privilege to work with passionate faculty, staff and students dedicated to ensuring everyone knows they belong at the University of Kentucky. Although the Office for Institutional Diversity helps initiate, develop and implement transformational programming related to diversity, equity and inclusion (DEI), members of our entire UK family are leaned into advancing ideals, values and norms that expanding cultures of engagement and belonging in their units and areas.” 

This is not the first time that the university has been recognized for its diversity and inclusion efforts by Forbes. Forbes has recognized UK the last four years as a “Best Employer for Diversity.”

“We greatly appreciate the community’s enthusiasm for and unyielding commitment to inclusive excellence,” Albert said. “Of course, we have more work to do, and we will continue to show Kentucky what is wildly possible when we open doors for all people.”

The university’s long-standing commitment to fostering an inclusive and diverse workforce is reflected in this recent recognition. As the University of, and for, Kentucky, the university strives for inclusive excellence by supporting processes that help address long-standing inequalities and social injustices.

To learn more about UK’s DEI efforts, click here. To view the Forbes list, click here

As the state’s flagship, land-grant institution, the University of Kentucky exists to advance the Commonwealth. We do that by preparing the next generation of leaders — placing students at the heart of everything we do — and transforming the lives of Kentuckians through education, research and creative work, service and health care. We pride ourselves on being a catalyst for breakthroughs and a force for healing, a place where ingenuity unfolds. It's all made possible by our people — visionaries, disruptors and pioneers — who make up 200 academic programs, a $476.5 million research and development enterprise and a world-class medical center, all on one campus.   

In 2022, UK was ranked by Forbes as one of the “Best Employers for New Grads” and named a “Diversity Champion” by INSIGHT into Diversity, a testament to our commitment to advance Kentucky and create a community of belonging for everyone. While our mission looks different in many ways than it did in 1865, the vision of service to our Commonwealth and the world remains the same. We are the University for Kentucky.