HLC gives university 'clean bill of health'

students walking on Pew Grand Rapids Campus by DeVos Center
Following a comprehensive visit in November, the Higher Learning Commission notified university leaders that Grand Valley was granted continued accreditation.
Image Credit: Amanda Pitts

The Higher Learning Commission, following a comprehensive visit in November, notified university leaders that Grand Valley was granted continued accreditation.

Chris Plouff, assistant vice president for Academic Affairs, said it was the equivalent of receiving a "clean bill of health," and it was rewarding to hear that the visiting team found all standards and core components were clearly met, with no recommendations for interim monitoring in any area.

"Certainly, we can continue to improve in several areas, but we are meeting, and often exceeding, the expectations in each of the areas outlined in the core components for accreditation," Plouff said.

He said the HLC visiting team remarked the assurance argument was well-written and was supported by substantial evidence. Plouff said a writing team of campus leaders began drafting the argument in 2014, documenting how Grand Valley meets the criteria for accreditation and demonstrating “the collective good work of the university."

When the team visited Grand Valley, November 5-6, they met more than 200 students, faculty and staff members. Plouff said those meetings continued to serve as documentation the university is doing what was stated in the assurance argument.

Breathing room after the accreditation visit for the Provost's Office and others on campus will be brief. Plouff said preparation for a planned assurance review in 2022 will begin in the 2020 fall semester. The next comprehensive site visit will be during the 2028-2029 academic year.