Rustin Moore, DVM, PhD, dean and Ruth Stanton Chair in Veterinary Medicine, was honored with the American Association of Veterinary Medical College's (AAVMC) 2023 Iverson Bell Award at the AAVMC’s Annual Conference and Iverson Bell Symposium last week in Washington, DC. Established in 1989, the award is presented by the AAVMC in memory and recognition of Dr. Iverson Bell’s outstanding leadership and contributions in the promotion of diversity in veterinary medical education.
Under Dean Moore’s leadership, the College of Veterinary Medicine has established actions and initiatives that enhance its ambition to Be The Model® in diversity, equity, inclusion and belonging (DEIB). During his tenure as dean, the college:
- Initiated the Community of Inclusion Certificate Program which has awarded more than 200 certificates of completion to students, faculty and staff.
- Increased the diversity of our student body through more holistic recruitment efforts and admissions processes, growing the number of historically excluded groups from 10.2% to an average of 30.2% across our current student body, including 22.4% male and 26% first-generation college students, the three groups considered underrepresented by the AAVMC.
- Established affinity groups that promote a place of belonging and opportunity through
- community engagement to support inclusivity in the college.
- Launched the Student Leaders for Inclusive Excellence Leadership Group, comprised of leaders of affinity groups, student chapter organizations and class diversity committee representatives. The group works together to foster a sense of belonging with one another and to develop leadership skills as they plan DEIB educational events to support diverse populations across the college community.
- Earned six consecutive Health Professions HEED (Higher Education Excellence in Diversity) Awards.
“A culture of inclusion values diversity and helps to build an awareness of the world and experiences beyond our own individual perspective. Through his efforts, Dean Moore ‘walks the talk’ and sets an example we can all work toward to help foster an environment for working, learning, and serving where each member of our college and those we serve feel welcome, comfortable, safe, respected, valued, and can thrive both professionally and personally,” said Sue Knoblaugh, DVM, and Sandra Dawkins the College of Veterinary Medicine’s faculty and staff directors of Diversity, Equity, Inclusion and Belonging.
“I’m honored to accept this award on behalf of our entire college community for their hard work and dedication to our efforts to foster diversity, equity, inclusion and belonging,” Dean Moore said. “I have the privilege to work with so many individuals and groups who understand the value of diversity, nurture a culture of inclusion, and build awareness of the world and experiences beyond our own individual perspectives.”
Dean Moore embodies all that Dr. Bell stood for to move diversity, equity, inclusion and belonging forward in veterinary medicine and beyond. You can learn more and and view a video shown at the event here or watch a recent podcast hosted by Dr. Lisa Greenhill as part of the AAVMC Diversity and Inclusion on Air series here.