NIACC Earns Maximum Recommendation for Re-accreditation of 10 Years from the Higher Learning Commission of the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools

October 8, 2003

Dr. Mark D. Johnson, chair of the visiting Higher Learning Commission of
the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools (HLC) evaluation team
stated the unanimous decision of the team was to recommend the maximum
re-accreditation of ten years until the year 2013-2014. “NIACC has always
gotten very positive, glowing HLC reports,” Johnson said. “We’d like to
congratulate NIACC on all your accomplishments.”

NIACC faculty, staff and community members attended the exit interview from
the HLC on Wednesday morning at the North Iowa Community Auditorium. “The
team’s findings are the culmination of our three years of preparation in our
pursuit of excellence,” Dr. Michael Morrison (retired 2008), NIACC President, said.
NIACC, which celebrates its 85th anniversary in 2003, has been accredited
by the HLC (formerly just the North Central Association) since 1919. In
order to maintain its accredited status, the College periodically undergoes
evaluation. Each evaluation cycle includes a thorough self-study followed
by an evaluation visit by a team of evaluators drawn from colleges similar

In this review, NIACC also requested accreditation to offer all approved
degrees via distance education. The visiting HLC team will recommend that
NIACC receive that approval from HLC. “We have confidence that you can
manage that area effectively,” Johnson said. Morrison responded, “This is an
incredible vote of confidence in the College.”

The entire College has been involved in an extreme self-study of the
organization, according to Morrison. “Through this process, we’ve gained
incredible advice and counsel from the HLC team, and we’re pleased with
their conclusions.”

The five-member team from the HLC, of which one member was not able to
visit NIACC due to illness, has been on the NIACC campus October 6-8 to
conduct the evaluation for continued accreditation. Team members include:
Dr. Mark D. Johnson, Vice President for Administration and Planning, Pulaski
Technical College; Dr. Robert C. Ernst, President, Northcentral Technical
College; Dr. James Baber, Dean of Instructional Services, Metropolitan
Community College District; Jerald L. Garner, Assistant Director Information
Technology, Hendrix College; and Dr. Harriet Howell Custer (unable to attend
visit), Vice President for Academic Affairs, Illinois Valley Community
College. The team toured campus facilities and met with various groups,
including Board members, community members, faculty, staff, advisory board
members and students.

Johnson and the committee reported on the tremendous strengths of the
College. Strengths that Johnson felt other colleges could learn from at
NIACC included exemplary community and business partnerships throughout its
service area, excellent internal staff relations, student satisfaction with
the College and its services, economic development initiatives, advocacy
efforts, attractive campus and facilities and remarkable relationships with
transfer institutions such at the Regents schools. Morrison said he was
pleased to hear that throughout the College and community the team had
experienced the genuine pride and enthusiasm surrounding NIACC.
Copies of NIACC’s self-study report are available for review in the NIACC
library. The draft report of the visiting team will be sent to Morrison on
November 5, 2003. The final report will arrive approximately one month
following the draft.

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