Campus News

UK Named to Forbes 2020 Best Employer for Diversity List

Student and tutor working on homework.
Pete Comparoni l UK Photo.

LEXINGTON, Ky. (Jan. 24, 2020) — The University of Kentucky was recently recognized for diversity and inclusion on the Forbes list of "Best Employers for Diversity" in 2020. The annual ranking recognizes companies across two dozen industries nationally that demonstrate a strong commitment to inclusive workplace practices.

Forbes released its third annual list of the Best Employers for Diversity Tuesday. UK ranked in the top 100 on the list and second for companies headquartered in Kentucky.

"It’s an honor and privilege to receive this recognition from Forbes this year," said Sonja Feist-Price, vice president for institutional diversity. "I share this award of distinction with staff, students and faculty across this great institution who work tirelessly to create a community that both values and celebrates our differences."

The list was composed by independently surveying a sample of 50,000 employees working for organizations across the United States from a variety of industry sectors. The sample of employees used an online, anonymous access panel to rate their employer on four criteria: direct recommendations, indirect recommendations, diversity among top executives/board and key performance indicators, such as proactive communication of a diverse company culture. 

The university ranked best in direct recommendations surrounding the topics of age, gender equality, ethnicity, disability and LGBTQ* inclusion, and the existence of positions and public initiatives responsible for diversity.

This is not the first time that the university has been recognized for its diversity and inclusion efforts. Forbes recognized UK in 2019 and 2018 as a “Best Employer” and “Best Employer for Diversity.” UK has also earned praise from organizations such as INSIGHT Into Diversity magazine, the Chronicle of Higher Education and Campus Pride. 

To learn more about UK's Diversity and Inclusion Strategy, click here. For a look at Forbes’ list, see 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.