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MUSC on Forbes list of best employers for diversity

MUSC ranks No. 6 in education category

Doctor talks with nurses
MUSC has about 13,000 employees. Photo by Brennan Wesley
Staff Report | adamshel@musc.edu | January 26, 2018

The Medical University of South Carolina has been ranked No. 53 out of 250 organizations on the Forbes 2018 list of America’s Best Employers for Diversity. In addition, MUSC ranked No. 6 among the 20 institutions listed in the education category.

In collaboration with Statista, Forbes asked 30,000 employees working for large U.S. companies and organizations to evaluate their employers on issues of diversity in the workplace. Participation in the survey was voluntary, and respondents were recruited from thousands of sources to maximize reach and representation of the U.S. workforce.

A company’s score is determined by four parts:

  • Direct employee recommendations
  • A public perception score
  • Percentage of women who fill top executive and board positions
  • An index of objective and publicly available diversity key performance indicators

One of the indicators used in the scoring is proactive communication of diverse company culture.

MUSC President David Cole said his team takes great pride in the recognition from Forbes because it notes MUSC's progress toward achieving one of the five goals of its strategy for the future: embracing diversity and inclusion.

“Together, the D and I implementation teams led by our two chief diversity officers are pushing MUSC forward as an institution in a thoughtful, strategic and measurable way," Cole said.  "The work these teams are doing is vital to the continued success of MUSC, and we need the ongoing commitment and engagement of our entire institution if we are going to succeed — not just in the short term, but long term as well.”

Forbes’ leadership editor Fred Allen said diversity makes businesses better places and richer in every sense of the word. “We hope that by introducing the definitive listing honoring the top performers we will stir discussion of the importance of diversity and inclusion and reinforce employers’ determination to do the best at it they can.”

Statista CEO Friedrich Schwandt agreed. “Our large survey of employees has shown that diversity is a highly relevant factor when choosing an employer."

MUSC has two chief diversity officers: Willette Burnham-Williams for the university and Anton Gunn for the health system. In addition, each of the six colleges at MUSC has a diversity officer, focused on achieving shared institutional diversity and inclusion goals. Burnham-Williams and Gunn collaborate across a workforce of more than 13,000 employees, along with nearly 3,000 students and 700 residents, to address the strategic diversity and inclusion goals and outcomes identified in the organization’s five-year strategic plan, called Imagine MUSC 2020.

Cole and his leadership team say there are three reasons why embracing diversity and inclusion is of pivotal importance:

  • It is who MUSC should be as an institution. 
  • It is how MUSC builds on what it is and what its employees can achieve together.
  • It affects the bottom line. People who feel valued are empowered to contribute and to be at their best.

Forbes ranks MUSC among America's best employers for diversity (Charleston City Paper, Jan. 26, 2018)

MUSC transforms its culture through accountability (Insight Into Diversity, Nov. 16, 2016)

MUSC is making impressive progress on increased diversity (The Post and Courier, June 3, 2016)

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