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UTPA among most admired companies for minorities in research science
Posted: 12/22/2009
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The University of Texas-Pan American was named one of the 2010 Most Admired Companies for Minorities in Research Science by the 24th Black Engineer of the Year STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Math) Conference Dec. 17.

The list represents a full array of employers who are working in critical areas of U.S. health care, agriculture, education, government and industry. There are fewer than 20 universities represented among the 93 corporations, organizations and institutions listed. Other educational institutions cited included MIT, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, and University of Central Florida, among others.

Awni Alshakshir, mechanical engineering graduate student, prepares to test railroad bearings.

Published for the past five years, the list is unique, said Dr. Tyrone D. Taborn, the founder of the conference and publisher of US Black Engineer & Information Technology magazine, because it is a survey of the readers and editors of US Black Engineer & Information Technology, Hispanic Engineer & Information Technology, Women of Color and Science Spectrum Online magazines regarding their impressions of diversity programs at today's top organizations.

"I am thrilled to present and honor the organization's that are providing opportunities for our nation's brightest stars," said Taborn. "Clearly, if we are to bring on a new cohort of science talent, we must begin by recognizing and applauding those in the employer community who are actively seeking a diverse workforce of the nation's most talented scientists, technologists and engineers."

Dr. Paul Sale, provost and vice president for Academic Affairs at UPTA, said he was pleased that the university has been recognized.

"This recognition is the result of a concerted effort by all of the UTPA faculty, staff, administration, and students to support and advance highly qualified women and minorities. I am proud that we have worked together to achieve this tremendous accolade," Sale said.

Taborn said the survey is important because it gives employers an insight into minority employee attitudes and increases their abilities to recruit outstanding scientific talent. He said that results indicate that, despite the economic recession, many of the top companies have maintained their commitment to diversity, retention and recruitment according to the survey of professional minority research scientists, technologists and engineers.

"Our survey shows that many employers are successfully managing, embracing, and cultivating a diverse work environment. Minority employees give their employers improved marks on managing diversity and being fair," he said. "The awards come at a time when the country is facing a science and technology crisis: Baby boomers are retiring, more restrictions are being placed on immigrating students and science workers, and foreign countries are fast catching up to the United States' technology lead."

The complete list of the 2010 Most Admired Companies is available at www.prlog.org.