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Federal Ethnicity Reporting Change

From: Tara L. Ferguson, PHR, Human Resources Analyst University of Alaska Statewide

The U.S. Department of Education requires the University of Alaska to report information on the ethnicity and race of its employees on an annual basis. All institutions that receive any federal dollars, must report statistics on race and ethnicity according to the categories established in the 2000 census. The University of Alaska additionally asks those of Alaska Native ancestry to identify themselves in more detail. We do this in order to complete statistical reporting for state grants, as well as for funding from native corporations in the state that help their students afford a college education.

Due to these changes in federal data collection and reporting requirements, employers began using new reporting categories effective January 1, 2009. These new requirements modify some of the ethnicity and race categories used in the past for federal reporting. The prior system, designated by the federal government, allowed only one option by which to categorize yourself. One of the benefits of this new schema is that it allows people to choose an ethnicity as defined by the U.S. government and then to choose one or many races. A person can choose as many races as they want from the list, as there are many people who fall into more than one category.

To ensure that current employee data is reported accurately, we are asking all current employees to review the ethnicity and race information presently on file. This information came from forms you completed at the time of hire. You can review this information online by going to http://uaonline.alaska. edu and also make any updates, if necessary. For detailed information and instructions, please refer to the following URL:

Please note that the information you provide will be used only for federal reporting purposes.


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