College’s Office of Equity, Diversity and Inclusion Receives HEED Award for the Fourth Time
The Office of Equity, Diversity and Inclusion (OEDI) at the University of Arizona College of Medicine – Phoenix received the Health Professions Higher Education Excellence in Diversity (HEED) Award for the fourth time.
INSIGHT Into Diversity magazine is the oldest and most robust equity, diversity and inclusion focused magazine and website in higher education. Over 60 colleges across the country were awarded the 2023 Health Professions HEED Award this year.
Annually, the magazine selects several colleges to receive the HEED Award, recognizing them as institutions of higher education that have outstanding commitments to diversity.
Sonji Muhammad Perry, MA, the director of OEDI, reflected on how far the team has come since its first HEED award in 2019.
“Being recognized for the fourth time acknowledges our continual work regarding equity, diversity and inclusion on our campus,” Perry said. “The HEED award is a testament to the collaboration and consistency of our college in this mission.”
Franciso Lucio, JD, associate dean of OEDI, said receiving the HEED award came at a time that captured many strategic accomplishments.
“We continue to diversify our student body and faculty, integrate health equity topics throughout the curriculum and deliver programs and activities that bring great benefit to our campus and community,” Lucio said. “These efforts are done by engaging all individuals at the college, and we should feel proud because it is together that we have earned this national recognition.”
Cammy Bellis, the academic program officer for OEDI and the co-director for the Health Equity Longitudinal Curricular Theme, said that she is delighted that the college has been recognized again for its efforts to advance equity, diversity and inclusion on the campus.
“I am proud to be a part of this important work that will improve health outcomes for all patients and allow us to attract future physicians committed to removing barriers to care,” Bellis said.
Alejandra Zapien-Hidalgo, MD, MPH, an assistant professor of Family, Community and Preventive Medicine at the college, said the award is a testament to opening the door wide for all voices and perspectives.
“Let this recognition remind us that our journey toward excellence in diversity is ongoing, and together, we continue to create a brighter, more inclusive future for all,” Dr. Zapien-Hidalgo said.
Nafis Shamsid-Deen, MD, FCCP, an assistant clinical professor of Internal Medicine at the college, expressed elation at the college receiving the HEED award.
“It’s a testament to our dedication to usher in an age in medical training where deliberate inclusive environments empower individuals from diverse backgrounds to thrive in their medical careers,” Dr. Shamsid-Deen said. “My hope is this will continue to serve as a vehicle to help us in our mission to further dismantle barriers to underrepresented minorities in medicine.”
About the College
Founded in 2007, the University of Arizona College of Medicine – Phoenix inspires and trains exemplary physicians, scientists and leaders to optimize health and health care in Arizona and beyond. By cultivating collaborative research locally and globally, the college accelerates discovery in a number of critical areas — including cancer, stroke, traumatic brain injury and cardiovascular disease. Championed as a student-centric campus, the college has graduated more than 800 physicians, all of whom received exceptional training from nine clinical partners and more than 2,700 diverse faculty members. As the anchor to the Phoenix Bioscience Core, which is projected to have an economic impact of $3.1 billion by 2025, the college prides itself on engaging with the community, fostering education, inclusion, access and advocacy.