(North Canton, OH – April 6, 2020) – Stark State College has received the highest level of reaccreditation – 10 years – from the Higher Learning Commission (HLC) after a comprehensive review of the institution’s academic offerings, governance and administration, mission, finances and resources.
Stark State demonstrated that it met all core components during an HLC site visit Nov. 18-20, and the accreditation was reaffirmed by the HLC’s Institutional Actions Council at its meeting on March 16, with no requirements for any monitoring or interim reports.
“HLC 10-year reaccreditation without recommendations or findings is the highest possible third-party affirmation of quality of programs, instruction and operations at Stark State College,” said Stark State President Para M. Jones, Ph.D. “Regional accreditation through HLC ensures students that Stark State College academic programs will transfer to other accredited public and not-for-profit colleges and universities in the region, state and nation.
“This is a rigorous quality process that requires continuous quality improvement on the part of our faculty and staff to ensure that students have the best quality education,” Jones said. “Quality educational programs at the lowest tuition in the area provide our students and communities with incomparable value in higher education.”
Institutional accreditation is a complete review by HLC, a private, nongovernmental organization specifically created to review higher education institutions and programs for quality. HLC works to validate the quality of an institution as a whole and to evaluate multiple aspects of an institution based on five overall criteria: mission; ethical and responsible conduct; the quality, resources, and support for teaching and learning; the evaluation and improvement of teaching and learning; and resources, planning, and institutional effectiveness.
“Receiving reaffirmation of HLC accreditation for the maximum number of years demonstrates that we continue to represent the highest level of educational quality, commitment to quality improvement and compliance with federal expectations,” said SSC Provost Lada Gibson-Shreve, PhD. “It also reaffirms the high level of integrity we bring to our community partners and other stakeholders, while being acknowledged for best practices in teaching and learning reaffirms the quality education received by Stark State students.”
HLC is an independent corporation founded in 1895 as one of six regional institutional accreditors in the United States. It accredits degree-granting post-secondary educational institutions in the North Central region comprised of 19 states. For more information on HLC and the accreditation process, visit www.hlcommission.org.
Stark State, offering 230-plus academic degrees and certificates, serves more than 15,000 students annually.