Crownpoint Awarded College Accreditation

Feb 15th, 2006 | By | Category: 17-3: Heroes of Today, Tribal College News

Crownpoint Institute of Technology (CIT, Crownpoint, NM) was awarded initial accreditation by the Higher Learning Commission (HLC) of the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools in October 2005. The institution has held candidacy for accreditation status since 2004.

The decision followed an April 25-27, 2005, visit by a team from the HLC. Beginning in 1986, CIT previously was accredited as a vocational school by the NCA Commission on Assessment and School Improvement.

James Tutt, long-term CIT President, said the faculty, staff, and board are very pleased with the decision. “Most of the faculty and staff worked very hard over the past two years, not just to improve the quality of education and management of the college but to write a book-length evaluative report on the college’s strengths and concerns. The visiting team’s comments show that we can identify our own strengths and vulnerabilities.”

CIT Vice President Elmer Guy said, “The Navajo Tribal Council and President Joe Shirley deserve special thanks for approving the Diné Higher Education Fund Act, which provides our college with a stable funding source far into the future,” he said. “The visiting team’s recommendation is a reflection of effort from the entire Navajo Nation.”

The college’s next comprehensive evaluation will be in 2010. In the meantime, there will be a focus visit to evaluate progress in two areas — planning and fiscal management. Planning at an academic institution involves every aspect of academic and supporting programs. The focus on planning is consistent with the institution’s own strategic planning efforts, according to Dr. Rosemary Ann Blanchard, dean of instruction.

The visiting team noted a number of strengths, including the institution’s strong adherence to its mission statement and its commitment to the Diné Philosophy of Education. The team also commended the college’s community engagement. The HLC found that CIT needs more consistency in its internal and external documents.

Accreditation has two fundamental purposes: quality assurance and institutional and program improvement.

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