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Frederick Douglass Distinguished Scholars Program Receives All-Inclusive Award

FDDS scholars pose outside

American University’s Frederick Douglass Distinguished Scholars Program (FDDS) has been awarded the 2017 All-Inclusive Award by Color Magazine in the category of Leadership. The highly competitive scholarship program admits five freshmen annually. Scholars are diverse in gender, race, sexual orientation, socioeconomic status, ability, and ethnicity. The FDDS program curriculum model focuses on multidisciplinary learning, leadership development, ethical civic engagement, ethical civic engagement, innovative problem solving, and strategic planning. 

“The Frederick Douglass Distinguished Scholars program at American University is designed to support and enhance some of the nation’s most talented scholars,” said Scott A. Bass, provost at American University. “The four-year, fully funded educational and leadership experience provides unparalleled opportunities for personal growth and enrichment, well beyond the classroom, and affords our scholars with the ability to give back to those less fortunate.”

Color Magazine’s All-Inclusive Awards recognizes individuals and organizations that have demonstrated a significant contribution toward creating a diverse and inclusive business, academic, or social community through the implementation of policies, procedures, initiatives, and programs. The Leadership Award honors an individual and a company that is advancing the evolution of diversity and inclusion efforts within their organization or community. This year’s awards ceremony took place in Boston on December 14.

AU’s FDDS program was selected for the All-Inclusive award over 199 other corporate, NGO, and college/university nominees. Other organizations receiving an award include: Boston Scientific, Liberty Mutual Insurance, The TJX Companies, Inc., and National Association for Multi-ethnicity in Communications (NAMIC). 

FDDS alumni are actively contributing to the workforce and society in a variety of roles, including business analyst at Goldman Sachs, strategy and operations at, PhD candidate, Fulbright Scholar, public policy analyst at ACLU, and much more. More information about current and former students in the FDDS program can be found on AU’s website. 

Although he could not accept the award in person, the following remarks from FDDS managing director Larry Thomas were read at the ceremony: “Thank you, Josefina Bonilla and Color Magazine for this incredibly special recognition. We would also like to thank our founder, Provost Scott Bass, our leader, Vice Provost Jessica Waters, and our everyday inspiration: the alumni and students of the Frederick Douglass Distinguished Scholars program. We are truly honored to receive a 10th Anniversary All-Inclusive Award, especially so close to our own 10th anniversary. We will place our award in a space where members of the American University community will see it often and be reminded of our unwavering commitment to inclusion, equity, and belonging. Thank you again, Color Magazine, and congratulations to our fellow honorees.”