Kellogg Community College is once again fully reaccredited by the Higher Learning Commission of the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools.
The Institutional Actions Council of the HLC voted June 18 to continue the college’s accreditation with the next comprehensive evaluation to be set in 2021-22. The college was previously reaccredited by the HLC during the spring semester of 2002.
Kellogg Community College President Dennis Bona called the college’s reaccreditation wonderful news.
“We have many to thank for contributing to this achievement, including our students, faculty and staff, but perhaps most notably the community leaders who stepped up and provided both written and oral testimonials to how valuable an asset the college is to the communities we serve and the life-changing impact we have on the lives of our citizens,” he said.
“On behalf of the Board of Trustees, the community we serve and, most importantly, our students, I extend sincere appreciation to all who contributed to making this reaccreditation process a success.”
As part of the continuing accreditation process – which must be undertaken every 10 years – institutions seeking accreditation must engage in a two-year self-study process and prepare a report of their findings in accordance with commission expectations.
The commission then sends an evaluation team of consultant-evaluators to conduct a comprehensive visit for continued accreditation and to write a report containing the team’s recommendations. This visit happened at KCC in February.
The documents relating to the comprehensive visit are then reviewed by a reader’s panel or a review committee, and a decision-making body then takes action on the reader’s panel recommendations.
The HLC’s Accreditation Report outlining the organization’s observations about the college calls KCC “an excellent institution that serves well in Battle Creek, Michigan” and notes the college’s Regional Manufacturing Technology Center as being “widely known as an excellent example for skilled trades training on an open-entry, open-exit basis.”
“Since the last comprehensive visit by an HLC Team in 2002, KCC has worked diligently toward continuous improvement with changes in mission, addition of new technology, improved assessment of classes, and diversity on campus,” the report says. “The administration provides strong leadership in all areas and communicates well with the campus and the community. Strong planning procedures are in place to carry the institutions into the next era of accountability and student success.”
HLC evaluators interviewed community members and leaders in addition to college administrators and found that “the College and the community are truly partners, both invested to meet the needs of the community and business and industry.”
College initiatives recognized as being of particular value in the HLC report include workforce development activities, high school dual enrollment programs, and the Legacy Scholars program, in addition to programs designed to support corporate training, basic adult education, dislocated worker programming, special training for youth, and general community education.
“These programs are integrated into the core work of the College,” the report says. “The greater community sees KCC as the heart of economic development, lifelong learning, and incumbent worker training.”
Also noted as key components in furthering the college’s mission to enrich the community are the college’s Diversity Plan, study abroad opportunities and an associate’s degree offering in International Studies.
Additionally, the HLC report notes a high degree of energy and enthusiasm among staff, conservative fiscal practices, pride in college facilities and responsible environmental stewardship as contributing to the creation of a dynamic environment focused on student success.
“Conversations with faculty, administration, students, staff, and community constituencies validated the institution’s clear commitment as a student-centered and caring institution,” the HLC report says. “It is evident that students’ educational needs are at the forefront at Kellogg Community College.”
As part of the continuing reaccreditation process, KCC must submit a progress report to the HLC by March 1, 2015, on assessments including a focus on general education and online delivery.
Pictured above is the front entrance area of Kellogg Community College’s Battle Creek campus.