April 9, 2010
10-070

Thressea Boyd
Director of Communications

VSU Cited for Excellence by SACS

VALDOSTA -- The Southern Association of Colleges and Schools (SACS) Commission on Colleges completed its on-site review of Valdosta State University. During the exit interview the SACS team said they had no recommendations for corrective action.

“The overall response from the on-site team was very positive, and the outcome of their visit exemplifies the culture of excellence that exists on this campus,” said President Patrick J. Schloss. “The absence of recommendations is highly uncommon and typical of only the finest institutions.”

In their comments, the team praised the students, faculty and staff for their cooperation and hospitality. The team was in full agreement that the university is committed to preparing students to meet global opportunities and challenges, and that we showcase excellence in teaching and learning.

“Students who depend on our service are the primary beneficiary of this achievement. The accreditation team has validated that the quality of instruction and student services exceed the standards against which quality institutions are judged,” Schloss said. “Beyond the accreditation standards, I know the passion that each and every member of the academic community shows for student development. There is no question why Valdosta State has nearly doubled in size over the last decade.”

The highlight of the review was the team’s focus on the Quality Enhancement Program (QEP) -- Faculty and Undergraduate Student Engagement. Six QEP projects have been selected and include research in the areas of anti-cancer drugs, military history, nursing, health care, child and adult language analysis, kitchen designs for the elderly and social inequalities of Hispanic immigrants along the U.S. and Mexico border.

The team determined that the university has an assessment process for the QEP that consists of direct and indirect measures enabling students to demonstrate their knowledge and skills. The team also stated that the university has the financial and human resources needed. Additionally, the team praised the planning and budget process, which they found provides reasonable assurance that those funds will continue to be available.

“Most importantly, they recognized that the faculty provides the energy and insight leading to this transformation. The team highlighted that the engagement of faculty and students in research and scholarship as a culture changing initiative,” Schloss said. “They also recognized our budget process, strategic focus, and decentralized budget pools as a catalyst for this initiative.”

Schloss praised Valdosta State’s faculty and staff for their assistances with the accreditation process and continuous improvement.

“The accreditation of Valdosta State is gained from efforts of every person on each and every day,” Schloss said. “It recognizes that we are a truly a community of scholars resident in a culture of excellence.”

The final reaffirmation confirmation is anticipated by the SACS Commission on Colleges in December.

For more information on SACS, visit http://www.valdosta.edu/sacs/