Oct. 5, 2012

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HCC Earns Continued Accreditation
Administration, Faculty, Staff Win Praise
Doing the Right Things in the Right Way

BRIDGEPORT - Housatonic Community College has earned continued accreditation from the New England Association of Schools and Colleges (NEASC), the regional accreditation agency for colleges and universities in the six New England states.In announcing the agency’s decision, Richard L. Pattenaude, Chairman of NEASC’s Commission on Institutions of Higher Learning, praised the College for its data-driven approach to planning and improvement, it’s involvement in the Achieving the Dream initiative, and its art museum. The continued accreditation follows a campus-wide self-study and assessment, and a visit to the College by a NEASC team.

“We’re delighted to receive continued accreditation and such commendations,” said HCC President Anita Gliniecki. “They provide us with an objective measure of how well we’re doing in our efforts to provide our students with the education and training they need. They show us that, indeed, we are doing the right things in the right way.”

Pattenaude commended the College for its “comprehensive, candid self-study that provided evidence of the College’s effectiveness in collecting and analyzing and using data for planning and improvement. Assessment activities are systematic and include measures of institutional effectiveness, assessment of student learning at the course and program level, and specific initiatives related to student success,” he said.

Pattenaude noted “with particular favor” the College’s participation in the Achieving the Dream initiative, a program sponsored by the Lumina Foundation that “has enabled the institution to deepen its commitment to student achievement.”
The Commission also concurs with the visiting team’s judgment that the College’s art museum is an asset to both the College and the surrounding community, Pattenaude said. In the commission’s estimation, the museum “provides a transformational aspect to the student learning experience,” he said.

Finally the Commission concurs with the visiting team that, “with its highly competent leadership team” and “enthusiastic, dedicated and well-qualified faculty and staff, the College is well positioned to continue to provide quality educational opportunities to the residents of its service region.”

Housatonic also won plaudits for its strategic planning process. “The Commission is pleased to learn that Housatonic Community College has appointed a committee to oversee the review and revision of its strategic plan,” Pattenaude said. The College last month held a public forum to gather public input on the role of the College, input that will be used in developing the plan.

Noting the “challenging financial environment” the College faces, the Commission was “gratified to learn of the steps the College is taking to enhance its fiscal stability, including the possible development of new academic programs and continuing education training programs and seeking to increase the level of support provided by the (Housatonic Community College) foundation,” Pattenaude said.