University Park, IL–(ENEWSPF)– Governors State University has received continued accreditation from the Higher Learning Commission (HLC) of the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools. At its June 14 meeting, the Higher Learning Commission board approved continued accreditation at GSU through 2020. The HLC is the regional accrediting organization in 19 Midwest and South-Central states.
An HLC team visited Governors State last November, closely examining all aspects of university operations. In its report, the HLC team called Governors State “a wonderfully unique institution, with a clearly defined mission and an outstanding collection of individuals.”
“GSU has strong leadership that strives for transparency and inclusiveness,” the report states. “The institution’s clear sense of mission and focus on transfer students is quite apparent across campus and unique. The notion that GSU serves as the ‘public square’ for the region is also evident, needed, and appreciated by the community.”
The report noted that GSU:
- Values and supports effective teaching.
- Increasingly provides state-of-the-art technology to enhance educational opportunities.
- Encourages specialized program accreditation whenever it is available – more than 60 percent of academic programs are now accredited by agencies specific to academic disciplines.
- Has established a variety of programs to foster a positive academic climate for a mostly part-time student clientele.
- Remains committed to diversity, which is “woven into the fabric of the university” and “thoroughly enriches the working and learning environment.”
Dr. Elaine P. Maimon, GSU’s President, thanked the entire campus community for participating in comprehensive self-study efforts leading up to last fall’s HLC visit. In the years leading up to the 2019 HLC visit, GSU will work to further strengthen effectiveness in general education and in comparative outcomes of online programs, Dr. Maimon said. Most GSU students complete their first two years of baccalaureate education at community colleges and fulfill many of their general education requirements before arriving at the university.
“Although we do not oversee the first two years of baccalaureate education, it is up to us to assess students’ general education abilities,” Dr. Maimon said. “This expectation has important implications, not only for GSU but for all higher education as more university graduates have transferred from other universities.”
Dr. Sandra Mayfield, GSU’s administrative liaison during the accreditation continuation process, said she was impressed by how the university community and surrounding communities in the south suburbs pulled together to ensure the successful continuation of the university’s accreditation.
“Faculty, staff, and students volunteered their time for meetings and for collection of information from groups and individuals on campus,” she said. “Businesses, community colleges, and other community agencies readily offered letters of support and sent representatives to attend meetings with the visitation team.”
HLC’s letter announcing the university’s continued accreditation, as well as the comprehensive report on last fall’s visit, are available on the university’s website at www.govst.edu/hlc.