The LeMoyne-Owen College has the official word administrators, staff, faculty and students had wanted to hear – reaffirmed.
The Southern Association of Colleges and Schools – Commission on Colleges (SACS) sent word June 20 that the college's accreditation is reaffirmed for the next 10 years. SACS is the recognized regional accrediting body in 11 Southern states for those institutions of higher education that award associate, baccalaureate, master's or doctoral degrees.
Accreditation is the education community's version of the "good housekeeping seal." The stamp of approval also is necessary for the college to compete for federally-funded research grants and for its students to receive federally-subsidized financial aid.
"I am deeply grateful to our faculty, administrators and staff for their time, talent and dedication during this process," LOC president Johnnie B. Watson said. "It speaks highly of the strength of the College in academic programs and support units.
Watson LOC looks forward to "building upon these strengths as we add programs and expand our offerings."
The reaccreditation is viewed as "a ringing endorsement" of the college's Quality Enhancement Plan, which focuses on improving students' oral communication skills. Watson said the reaffirmation was never in doubt.
"We had no sanctions, penalties or warnings during the process," he said. "It was routine and very smooth. We are very pleased with the outcome and look forward to continued success academically and financially."
LeMoyne-Owen College awards bachelor's degrees in arts, science and business administration in 22 major areas of study. The college's average enrolment is 1,100, a figure that has doubled in the past 7 years.