HLC Gives Diné College 10-Year AccreditationFeb 15th, 2009 | By tcj | Category: 20-3: Tribal Athletes Fight for Their Place, Tribal College News
For the first time in its 40-year history, Diné College (DC, Tsaile, AZ) received 10-year accreditation status for its associate degree programs. The college also received approval from the Higher Learning Commission (HLC) of the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools to award DC’s first bachelor’s degree in elementary teacher education.
“A 10-year accreditation is the gold standard for colleges and universities throughout the country,” says President Ferlin Clark (Diné). “This visit re-affirms the quality and integrity of our curricular offerings, services, and our faculty and staff.”
The college also received approval to offer upper-level courses in Diné Studies, which Clark says will pave the path toward a BA degree in Diné Studies in the near future.
A team of eight accreditation reviewers visited Diné College in April 2008 as part of an intensive comprehensive visit to review the college’s academic programs, credentials, funding, assessment programs, and its request to offer bachelor degrees.
Accreditation is vital for higher education institutions and allows for course transferability; scholarship funding; and for tribal, state, and federal funds to support the operations, maintenance, and development of colleges. The HLC team recommended a focus visit in 2012/2013 to include the new bachelor program, as well as areas of consultation in communication and governance.
“We believe that the prayers, songs, ceremonies, and good thoughts, which were offered many years ago and just recently have come to fruition today,” says Clark, adding “We are thankful to everyone who has contributed to Diné College.”
“We are proud of this historic accomplishment as we celebrate our 40-year anniversary, says Diné College Board President Fannie Atcitty. “ It took the entire college community three years to prepare and to achieve this tremendous milestone.”