Kuyper College Reaccredited

After an exhaustive process, which included a three-day on-campus visit by an accreditation team from The Higher Learning Commission (HLC), Kuyper College’s reaccreditation was affirmed for the maximum period of time allowed—10 years. In addition, Kuyper’s status was raised to a new accreditation program called Pathways. Pathways features a ten-year cycle of assurance and improvement with reviews scheduled at the 4th and 10th year marks, and a progress report due in 2014-2015. The HLC, as part of the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools (NCA), one of six regional institutional accreditors in the United States, works to accredit about 1200 colleges and universities in the 19-state North Central region.

Prior to the reaccreditation visit, Joy Milano, Kuyper’s registrar and director of assessment, chaired a steering committee which undertook the complex process of conducting a two-year-long Self-Study of the College. Made up by various members of the Kuyper community, the committee summarized areas of strengths and areas of opportunities and development. The Self-Study document cites five principles that Kuyper follows—each with several core components: Mission and Integrity; Preparing for the Future; Student Learning and Effective Teaching; Acquisition, Discovery and Application of Knowledge; and Engagement and Service.

In an announcement sent to the staff, faculty and board of trustees, Kuyper’s President, Nick Kroeze, said, “A major goal that Joy Milano and the team worked toward with the Self-Study—and which all you contributed to through the enhancements made to our academic programs and support structure—was that we would be placed squarely in the new Pathway process established by HLC/NCA. We are now for, the first time in our history, accredited for the full Ten-Year period allowed by the HLC!”

During their visit in November of 2012, the HLC team members reviewed the Self-Study and its academic programs, processes, objectives, criteria for success, outcomes and many other areas. They also met and interviewed students, professors, administrators, community leaders and other stakeholders. The HLC congratulated Kuyper on developing a Self-Study which it called a model for other institutions to learn from and follow. The HLC also extended an invitation to Kuyper to present the document at the NCA’s annual conference, and for Milano to lead a Self-Study workshop session prior to the meeting.
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