NEW LONDON, N.H., Dec. 10, 2015 /PRNewswire/ -- Colby-Sawyer College is pleased to announce that they have been reaccredited by The Commission on Institutions of Higher Education of the New England Association of Schools and Colleges (NEASC). The college, accredited by the Commission since 1933, received the maximum 10-year accreditation, which applies to the institution as a whole.
Though seeking accreditation is voluntary, the federal government requires it for institutions to receive certain federal and state grants and loans. Colby-Sawyer's reaccreditation follows a two-year self-study the Commission noted as thoughtful and evidence-based, as well as a site visit in March by a team of evaluators. The college's next comprehensive evaluation is scheduled for spring 2025.
The Commission found Colby-Sawyer substantially in compliance with NEASC's standards and commended the college for a "distinctive mission" that permeates the institution's programs and services; a career and academic advising center that has "become a model for other institutions"; a robust culture of assessing student learning; a retention rate of 77.9 percent and a diverse student body.
The Commission praised the smooth implementation of a new Liberal Education Program last fall and the conversion of most courses from three credits to four; the establishment of the School of Health Professions, and the college's strong relationship with Dartmouth-Hitchcock Medical Center; an engaged board of trustees, respected senior administration and committed faculty and staff. They also noted the college's investment over the last four years of $17 million in facility renovations, maintenance and new equipment; its plans to build a new arts building in 2016; and its progress of raising $24 million toward a $60 million comprehensive campaign goal.
In five years, the college will submit a required interim report, and in two years, the college will submit a report emphasizing its progress in implementing a new strategic plan; continued development and effectiveness of distance education offerings; reducing the tuition discount rate and increasing net revenue per student; implementing facilities improvements through funding depreciation, fund raising or additional debt; and administrative transitions as a new generation of leadership takes the reins. President Thomas C. Galligan Jr. has announced he will step down when his term ends in June, as will Chair of the Board Thomas C. Csatari.
"Many thanks to our Academic Vice President and Dean of Faculty Deborah A. Taylor, who has served Colby-Sawyer for 40 years and will retire at the end of this year, for overseeing this successful reaccreditation process," states Colby-Sawyer President Thomas C. Galligan. "The Commission made it clear that they have a positive impression of the college, and their approval is a really wonderful and important validation of the great deal of effort and care that was taken by all in preparation for the review."
"Much hard and thoughtful work was done by our community members, and the evaluators were impressed by our warmth and dedication to students and the college's mission that characterizes the people of Colby-Sawyer," says Academic Vice President and Dean of Faculty Deborah A. Taylor, Ph.D. "The Commission's favorable report is a wonderful reflection on the strength of the college and the commitment of those who work here, the students who come here to learn, and the trustees who guide us with their wisdom and dedication."
About Colby-Sawyer College
Colby-Sawyer College is a comprehensive college that integrates the liberal arts and sciences with professional preparation. The college's faculty, staff and students strive for excellence in an engaged teaching and learning community that fosters students' academic, intellectual and personal growth. With a strong emphasis on learning outcomes, including breadth and depth of knowledge, self-growth, creative and critical thinking, and effective communication, Colby-Sawyer prepares students to thrive post-graduation and make a positive impact upon a dynamic, diverse and interdependent world.
Founded in 1837, Colby-Sawyer is located in the scenic Lake Sunapee Region of central New Hampshire. Learn more about the college's vibrant teaching and learning community at www.colby-sawyer.edu.
SOURCE Colby-Sawyer College