Standard Century, Volume 4 No. 2

The evidence confronting the community of private, independent colleges and schools that derives its assurance of quality and integrity from ACICS is unambiguous: the forces of change have gained strength, and the impetus for fortifying institutional commitments to effectively serving students is manifest. Conspicuously absent from the evidence, or its rational analysis, is an unambiguous inventory of the components of change: what specific aspects of the educational activities of member institutions must be reviewed, revised and recreated, if necessary, to re-establish the authority of this community of instructors and educators? Absent an objective inventory, the void is filled with distraction and inference. What is required, however, is data, verifiable information, accurate metrics and dispassionate discourse, built on personal and organizational integrity. Beyond that, what is required is a renewal of the commitment to enhancing the experience of students currently enrolled in programs this semester, this week, today. When a sense of immediacy is harnessed to the honorable and faithful instincts of this community of educators, the inventory of opportunities for meaningful and enduring change comes sharply in to focus; more importantly, the control of the destiny of these institutions is returned to the structures of self-governance and ethical standards that have served the ACICS membership effectively for nearly 104 years.

The occasion of ACICS' re-recognition by various independent agencies represents a substantial opportunity for the organization and all of its primary stakeholders to reconfirm their dedication to serving students effectively. The evidence informing the content and scope of that reconfirmation includes perspectives and prerogatives from a wide array of third-parties, many well-intended and sincere. But it must also include evidence derived from the diligent and professional application of the art and science of organizational effectiveness. It requires asking important questions of students continuously and listening carefully to their answers. It requires that those answers shape and guide the enhancements produced by the process of continuous quality assurance, known as accreditation. Knowledge is empowering, but is must be applied relentlessly to fortify the experience of students currently enrolled.

As ACICS encounters opportunities to explain and defend these bedrock principles to the broader community of stakeholders, take heart in knowing that the accreditor and the education institutions share a great common ground. Also assume that the sense of immediacy, data-driven diligence and professionalism will be greatly more conspicuous in every aspect of the ACICS program of accreditation, including site visits, program reviews, complaints and adverse information, substantive changes and student achievement metrics. Also assume the quality and quantity of evidence available to the Council this cycle, and every cycle going forward, will be substantially greater in quality and quantity.

The impetus for change and the timing of change is rarely within our control; however, the manner in which we respond to the impetus is completely up to the 900 member institutions of ACICS, the hundreds of volunteers who review and shape Council actions, and the 40 loyal, dedicated professionals who direct the day-to-day operations of our agency.

Expect greater depth and detail derived from these themes of change in the weeks ahead, including at the 2016 ACICS Annual Meeting May 13 in Fort Worth.

Anthony S. Bieda
Executive in Charge

Fast Track Policy Revisions and Memo to the Field
On April 19th ACICS released a Memorandum to the Field that outlines a comprehensive series of reforms and quality assurance enhancements to ACICS's Accreditation Criteria. Upon adoption at the Annual Conference & Business Meeting in Fort Worth, Texas, these reforms signal a significant fortification of ACICS standards for schools wishing to receive initial accreditation and those seeking re-accreditation. Member institutions are welcome to submit comments to the policy revisions before they are adopted in May and take effect July 1. Please send all comments to: by Friday, May 6.

Welcome New ACICS Staff
ACICS is excited to add several new faces to our team.

Ms. Delisa Barcia has joined the staff as the interim executive assistant to the Executive in Charge. Delisa has a master's degree in business management from Universidad Sta. Maria La Antigua, Panama and recently moved to Centreville, Virginia from Panama.

Two new accreditation coordinators joined the Accreditation and Institutional Development (AID) department. They are Ms. Anne Bennett and Ms. LaToya Boyd. Anne obtained her master's in TESOL (Teachers of English to Speakers of Other Languages), as well as in secondary education and single subject credentials. LaToya obtained her master's in nonprofit management and leadership from Capella University, as well as her bachelor's in interdisciplinary studies/education from Virginia State University.

The AID department also welcomes Ms. Samantha Shellum as a Program Analyst I. Samantha holds a bachelor of science in public health with a concentration in health education from the George Mason University.

Annual Meeting
The ACICS 6th Annual Conference & Business Meeting is set for May 11 - 13, 2016 at the Worthington Renaissance Hotel in Ft. Worth, Texas. Learn the current trends in education, best practices in recruitment, and latest U.S. Department of Education requirements. Experience the excitement of the festive Exhibition Hall, the networking of new and old colleagues and our famous Dinner Dance.

Register today!


Initial Accreditation Workshop
May 10, 2016
in Ft. Worth, Texas

Renewal Accreditation Workshop
May 10, 2016
in Ft. Worth, Texas

Renewal Accreditation Workshop
August 25, 2016
Indianapolis, Indiana

Initial Accreditation Workshop
October 4, 2016
Pasadena, California