from UNC Asheville News Service
The Southern Association of Colleges and Schools’ Commission on Colleges has announced the reaffirmation of accreditation for UNC Asheville. The announcement came at the SACS annual meeting this week in Dallas. The accreditation term is 10 years. The SACS Commission on Colleges is a regional accrediting body for degree-granting higher education institutions in the Southern states.
“This is a very gratifying moment for us,” said Economics Professor Bruce Larson, who chaired UNC Asheville’s working group on reaccreditation. “We saw the reaffirmation process as a chance to put plans in place to further develop the critical thinking skills of our students – there was consensus across the campus on this goal. This will make UNC Asheville’s already excellent academic experience an even better one in the coming decade, and we’re glad the SACS commission approves of our strategy.”
“I could not be more proud of our university,” said UNC Asheville Chancellor Anne Ponder, who attended the SACS meeting in Dallas. “I would like to thank Provost Jane Fernandes, Professor Larson and the rest of the working group, as well as the faculty, staff and students who participated in the reaffirmation process and developed plans to further enhance critical thinking in our coursework. It was truly a campus-wide effort.”
As a part of a multi-year process of reaccreditation, UNC Asheville developed a Quality Enhancement Plan (QEP) called Inquiry ARC, which focuses on active learning experiences that will enhance students’ critical thinking skills. Mary Lynn Manns, associate professor of management and accountancy, chaired the QEP leadership team that developed the Inquiry ARC framework. Lorena Russell, associate professor of literature and new QEP chair, is leading implementation.
The SACS Commission strives to improve the effectiveness of institutions by ensuring that colleges meet established standards that address the needs of society and students. The organization accredits or reaccredits diverse institutions in Alabama, Florida, Georgia, Kentucky, Louisiana, Mississippi, North Carolina, South Carolina, Tennessee, Texas, Virginia and Latin America and other international sites that award associate, baccalaureate, master’s or doctoral degrees.