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Rutgers SPAA Receives 2019 Social Equity Award from NASPAA

NASPAA 2019 Social Equity Award
Mohamad Alkadry, left, presents the 2019 Social Equity Award from NASPAA to SPAA Dean Charles Menifield, Distinguished Research Fellow Marilyn Rubin, and Assistant Teaching Professor and MPA Program Director Rachel Emas.

The School of Public Affairs and Administration (SPAA) at Rutgers University–Newark was awarded the 2019 Social Equity Award by the Network of Schools of Public Policy, Affairs, and Administration (NASPAA) on Thursday, Oct. 17 during a ceremony at the annual NASPAA conference. The award recognizes a program that exemplifies the highest standards in promoting and supporting social equity through research, teaching, and service by faculty and staff. 

Mohamad Alkadry, co-chair of the NASPAA Diversity and Social Equity Committee, presented the award to Dean Charles Menifield, Distinguished Research Fellow Marilyn Rubin, and Assistant Teaching Professor and MPA Program Director Rachel Emas.

"We have a very diverse student body, faculty, and staff at Rutgers University–Newark (#1 in the nation) and the School of Public Affairs and Administration is no exception,” said Dr. Menifield. “However, we don't assume that subjects such as diversity, inclusion, and equity will occur naturally. The faculty and staff have done yeoman's work in addressing social equity in every respect and we are very excited to receive the Social Equity Award from NASPAA in recognition of our efforts. We hope that our courses, programs, practices, and community engagement efforts serve as a positive example to other programs that seek to address the issue."

SPAA has a proud history of making meaningful contributions to scholarship, diligently preparing students, and thoughtfully serving the diverse student body, the city of Newark, and beyond while practicing and promoting social equity through various activities and initiatives including:

  • SPAA's Office of Public Engagement (OPE) facilitates faculty and student engagement and collaborative endeavors with government and nonprofit organizations in the Greater Newark area and throughout New Jersey and sponsors events for Newark high school students on topics relating to diversity and social equity.
     
  • Board of Governors Distinguished Service Professor Alan Sadovnik launched a special topics course titled, “Education in Newark” which explores the relationship between poverty and schooling and issues related to education and social equity in the Newark public school system.
     
  • Board of Governors Distinguished Professor Norma Riccucci signed the Minnowbrook 50 Social Equity Manifesto, which documented the need to include social equity as a central pillar of public administration.
     
  • SPAA and the National Academy of Public Administration (NAPA) co-hosted the 2019 Social Equity Leadership Conference (SELC), with the theme of “Achieving Social Equality in Turbulent Times: A Grand Public Administration Challenge." The "Social Equity in Public Administration: 50 Years Passing and 50 Years Forward " plenary panel discussed the successes made in public affairs since the first Minnowbrok Conference 50 years ago, and outlined a way to continuing driving the conversation forward for the next 50 years. 

For more information on SPAA’s dedication to promoting and practicing social equity, visit spaa.newark.rutgers.edu/social-equity.