Spring quarter is underway and the students, faculty, staff and alumni affiliated with the Office of Minority Affairs & Diversity (OMA&D) have been quite busy. They earned some well-deserved honors, beat the odds to pursue higher education and gave back to their communities. I hope you will take some time to read more about the great work that is happening around campus in this latest edition of eNews.
In February I had the opportunity to travel to Olympia to watch Governor Inslee sign the REAL (Raising Educational Access, Changing Lives) Hope Act. Also known as Senate Bill 6523, this legislation extends State Need Grant funds to undocumented students to help them pay for college. Attending the signing were hundreds of students and supporters, including a group of us from the University of Washington. The UW student voice in the movement to pass the bill has been critical and I could not be more proud of this advocacy. Because of their work, many more of our state’s citizens will have access to a college education which will benefit us all. Investing in all of our young people is investing in our own success.
Two of our signature OMA&D events are coming up in the next few weeks and we hope to see many of you there. The 10th annual Samuel E. Kelly Distinguished Faculty Lecture on April 24 will feature Information School Associate Dean for Research and Associate Professor Cheryl A. Metoyer. We are greatly looking forward to her talk that will examine the historic development of Native Americans in higher education. The event is free, but we ask that you RSVP here by April 21.
It is hard to believe that this year marks our 44th annual Celebration, Fête and Honors. Since 1971, OMA&D and the Friends of the Educational Opportunity Program (EOP) have hosted this event to honor the academic success of EOP students, recognize the Charles E. Odegaard Award recipient and raise funds for scholarships. For many of the underrepresented minority, first-generation and low-income students we serve, their goal of earning a UW education would not be possible without the support of our generous donors and friends. More information about how you can get involved is available on the Celebration web site.
This year’s Odegaard Award recipient is Denny Hurtado, former chair of the Skokomish Tribe and retired director of Indian Education for the Washington State Office of the Superintendent of Public Instruction. Denny’s passion, dedication and pioneering efforts have left a legacy that has transformed education not only for Native American students, but for every student in the state. We are thrilled to honor him for his groundbreaking work in the K-12 educational system and honor him for his outstanding leadership.
Sadly we recently lost three great friends of OMA&D in recent months, UW professor Stephanie Camp and local community leaders Vera Ing, ’74, and Herman McKinney, ’69. Stephanie, who passed away on April 2, at the age of 46, was an associate professor in the Department of History and the Donald W. Logan Family Endowed Chair in American History. She was a historian of African Americans, slavery, the American South, and women and gender, and her important work undoubtedly came to an end too soon.
Vera, who passed away on Jan. 18, at the age of 73, was a loyal supporter of diversity efforts at the UW and a strong community activist for Seattle’s Chinatown International District. She and her husband Joey received the UW Multicultural Alumni Partnership Distinguished Alumni Award in 2011.
Herman passed away on April 11, at the age of 75. As a former assistant dean at the UW Graduate School and the first director for GO-MAP, Herman was a pioneer for diversity in graduate education here on campus. He was also a tireless advocate for equal opportunity through his work as the director of the Urban Enterprise Center and a mentor to countless young African-American professionals in our community. We were honored to recognize him as a recipient of the Odegaard Award in 2003. Stephanie, Vera and Herman will be greatly missed and we continue to hold their families in our thoughts during this time.
We also continue to be grateful for the generosity of you, our alumni and friends, who make it possible for OMA&D to provide educational opportunity and access for students. We always enjoy hearing from you so be sure to fill out the OMA&D Alumni Connect Form to share what is happening in your world.
Sheila Edwards Lange
Vice President for Minority Affairs
Vice Provost for Diversity