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Showcase Awards

Faculty Diversity Award


For advancing diversity at the University

This award recognizes distinctive and outstanding teaching, research, or creative work and/or service/outreach that advances diversity at Washington State University.

Diversity includes the cultures, world views, values, and personal experiences that may result from differences in race, ethnicity, gender, age, religion, language, abilities, socioeconomic status, sexual orientation, geographic region, and more. 

Zoe Higheagle Strong

Department of Kinesiology and Educational Psychology
Assistant Professor and Executive Director of Tribal Relations and Special Asst. to the Provost and Exec. Vice President

Zoe Higheagle Strong helps underrepresented students overcome trauma and close the achievement gap. Working in rural, tribal, and urban communities, she examined how adolescents who are Black, Indigenous, and people of color (BIPOC) experience and respond to conflict, harassment, and discrimination. She identified peer actions that promote emotional health, prosocial behavior, and positive identity. She designed a culturally sustaining mentoring intervention for college and career readiness called wíiwyeteq’is “growing into an elder,” grounded in Nez Perce stories and language. Her discoveries help communities to foster resilience and well-being.  

Across the WSU system, Strong oversees tribal relations, Native American programs, and the Center for Native American Research and Collaboration. She led development of higher education’s first-ever executive policy on tribal engagement and consultation and engagement. She was invited to serve on an American Educational Research Association presidential panel and was chosen to lead a committee for the state’s Office of the Superintendent for Public Instruction. She co-leads projects to advance STEM research experiences for underrepresented groups and in tribal communities.


Previous recipients

2021Melissa Parkhurst, Music
2020Gisela Ernst-Slavit, Education
2019Shira Broschat, electrical engineering and computer science
2018Raymond Herrera, Graduate School
2017Paul Kwon, psychology
2016Paula Groves Price, education
2015Pamela Bettis, education
2014Dana Baker, public policy
2013Eric J. Johnson, education
2012Ella Inglebret, speech and hearing sciences
2011Carol Allen, nursing

Award criteria, application process, and video of previous recipients