For Immediate Release
Merrill Miller, 202-238-9088 ext. 105, email@example.com
(Pittsburgh, PA, Feb. 12, 2015)—Today Carnegie Mellon University will receive the American Humanist Association’s 2015 University Award for Philosophical Diversity. The award will be accepted by Richard Scheines, Dean of the Dietrich College of Humanities and Social Sciences, Andy Norman, Director of CMU’s Humanism Initiative, and Winston Yin and Katie Beittenmiller, representing the University’s student Humanist League.
“We’re pleased to recognize Carnegie Mellon University and its Humanist League for its commitment to fostering dialogue about humanism and upholding the humanist values of reason, compassion and justice,” said Roy Speckhardt, executive director of the American Humanist Association. “As awareness of humanism and secular viewpoints increases in universities, we are proud to support schools that prepare students for work in the secular movement and beyond.”
The work of the Carnegie Mellon University Humanist League, a thriving student organization, has enriched the campus and the larger community by promoting humanistic inquiry. The group has hosted numerous educational events, weekly discussion nights and cultural and service outings. Its efforts have raised awareness of important social issues such as reproductive rights, sexual harassment, hate speech and censorship, LGBTQ acceptance, mental illness and the separation of church and state. It has also supported the celebration of science through its observances of Carl Sagan Day and Darwin Day.
The University Award for Philosophical Diversity is given to institutions of higher education that meet standards of openness to humanism, including offering a course on humanist studies, employing a faculty member engaged in research relevant to humanist studies and having a secular student organization recognized by the institution and existing in a supportive environment. By offering the award, the American Humanist Association hopes to counter common prejudices against humanists and other non-theists as well as recognize universities that are inclusive in their acceptance of everyone wishing to express their freedom of and freedom from religion.
Founded in 1941 and headquartered in Washington, D.C., the American Humanist Association (AHA) works to protect the rights of humanists, atheists, and other non-religious Americans. The AHA advances the ethical and life-affirming philosophy of humanism, which—without beliefs in any gods or other supernatural forces—encourages individuals to live informed and meaningful lives that aspire to the greater good of humanity.