HONOLULU — University of Hawai’i campuses took the top spots in The Chronicle of Higher Education’s list of most diverse campuses in the United States.
The Chronicle of Higher Education has ranked UH Hilo as the most diverse four-year public institution in the country. UH filled out all the top spots in that category, with UH Maui College, UH West O’ahu and UH Mānoa ranking two through four respectively.
Windward Community College not only led the two-year public institution rankings but was also rated as the single most diverse campus in the nation. Hawai’i Community College, Kaua’i Community College and Leeward Community College rounded out the top four in that category, followed by Berkeley City College, Honolulu Community College and Kapi’olani Community College.
“This outstanding ranking is due to the work of faculty and staff in making UH Hilo an accessible campus where students from diverse backgrounds can succeed. It is always great to be identified as number one for something, but when it is for something that really matters, and in which we take pride, we have reason to celebrate,” said UH Hilo Chancellor Don Straney.
The Chronicle’s diversity index uses national data to calculate the probability that any two students at an institution are from different racial or ethnic groups.
“I did my undergrad in the mainland and for them I think it is a little different because they don’t get to see as much cultural diversity as we do here, so I think it is good for UH students to see different cultures and different people, and everything like that. It makes us a lot more tolerant and understanding of other cultures,” said UH Mānoa graduate student Kasie Tanabe.
“The exceptional rankings of our entire UH System are not only a reflection of Hawai’i’s unique island diversity but also a testament to the commitment and passion of our faculty, staff and students in celebrating and supporting our diversity,” said UH President David Lassner. “Itʻs part of strategy to bring in more students, international students, full tuition paying students. And it reflects the welcoming spirit of our campuses. And it is one of the reason we think international students will really treasure the opportunity to attend a University of Hawaiʻi campus.”
“Being a diverse campus means that our students are able to study with people who have different experiences and different ways of thinking than they do. And they learn more,” said University of Hawaiʻi at Hilo Chancellor Donald Straney. “Thatʻs what being the most diverse campus is going to mean for the students, is they are going to have a much better educational experience than if we were the other end of the spectrum.”
Jonathon Neyland, a student at the University of Hawaiʻi at Mānoa, “It is not surprising especially when like you go to school here and you walk around, you see new faces, people from different races, everyone. And honestly you kind of get use to it so you really donʻt notice it that much. So everyone is different, everyone has different experiences and it really just brings, itʻs like a melting pot at UH, brings everyone around, we can all learn from each other and itʻs really great.”