Parkland College officials are pleased to announce that the college’s accreditation through the Higher Learning Commission, North Central Association of Colleges and Schools, has been continued.
The college received a letter affirming its status with the commission, dated Feb. 28; Parkland’s next reaffirmation of accreditation will take place in 10 years, during the 2022-2023 academic year. Parkland College earned full HLC accreditation in 1972 and has since received 10-year status reaffirmations, with no interim reports or visits (1981, 1993, 2002 and 2012).
As part of the reaccreditation process, an evaluating team made up of Higher Learning Commission members visited the college last October. The team toured the campus; reviewed documents, policies and processes; and interviewed college trustees, employees, students and public stakeholders. In its report, the team found that Parkland “is responding to the needs of its community and students.
“Parkland College is poised to meet future needs, is financially stable, and works to provide an excellent learning environment for its students,” the team stated. “The commitment and support from the community is extraordinary and reflects the true integration of Parkland and District 505. The Board’s strategic vision is in concert with programs and services that the college provides. The leadership and staff are dedicated and effective in the work they do on behalf of the college. The team believes that Parkland College has demonstrated its ability to grow and is eminently prepared to respond to ongoing and anticipated community needs. […] Parkland is poised to be a leading institution in Illinois, the region and the nation.”
College administrators expressed delight with the commission’s unequivocal affirmation of Parkland’s high academic and operational standards as a North Central Association member institution.
“This Higher Learning Commission has provided an independent, in-depth assessment of our work over the past 10 years, and based on data — measurable evidence — confirmed that this is an outstanding community college and we are indeed accomplishing our goals and mission,” Parkland President Tom Ramage said. “This represents the highest level of praise possible from our accrediting body. There is no higher level of affirmation. We have earned our ‘A’. I could not be more proud to be associated with Parkland College.”
“On a day-to-day basis, I observe the excellence of Parkland College's programs, people and services, and I am always proud to share about them," Board of Trustees Chair Tom Bennett said. "So while it's no surprise to find Parkland's premier reputation upheld at the national level through continued HLC accreditation, it is reassuring to see the college receive the wider recognition it deserves as a model institution of higher learning.”
The North Central Association of Colleges and Schools (NCA) is one of six regional institutional accreditors in the United States, recognized by the U.S. Department of Education through its membership in the Council for Higher Education Accreditation. The Higher Learning Commission, a Chicago-based independent corporation, is one of the NCA’s two commissions that work to accredit degree-granting post-secondary educational institutions in the North Central region. For more information on the commission, visit www.ncahlc.org
; find more on Parkland College’s 2012 HLC status at www.parkland.edu/HLC-teamreport