Highline Community College in Des Moines has been recognized by the American Association of Community Colleges for increasing diversity and social equity on campus.

Highline was one of six colleges in the nation honored with the Award of Excellence at the association’s annual convention in Washington, D.C. The school was chosen for “a campus culture that honors diversity and social equity, a mission statement and policies that embrace those core values, and a wealth of programs, services and events for people of all colors, faiths and sexual orientation.” 

According to statistic from the school, nearly seven of every 10 Highline students are students of color. Fifty-eight percent are women, and 53 percent of students enrolled in financial aid-eligible classes receive need-based state or federal aid.

“At Highline, diversity is a core value, a source of pride, and a daily call to action,” said Jack Bermingham, president of the college. “It’s great when you are recognized for the soul of your institution.”

“At Highline, diversity is not a project or a program, it’s who we are,” added Highline trustee Fred Mendoza. “My sense and my observation is that diversity comes so naturally for us at Highline that we really don't need recognition, but it's nice when others see it. At the same time, we will not rest on our laurels.”