Executive Director Update - January 2010


Wishes for success and quality in 2010
The agenda for ACICS as a primary accreditor of professional, technical and occupational colleges and schools this year will focus on the strategic priorities of the Board, including enhancing the accreditation process, improving the image and reputation of the organization, strengthening the corps of volunteer evaluators, and growing membership. More detail on the mission and goals of the ACICS leadership team can be found in the 2009 Annual Report, “Empowering Workforce Education,” distributed to all member institutions this month, and available on the website at

AB 48 Implementation – California
New streamlined regulatory authority in California provides opportunities for ACICS institutions to serve the dynamic markets and meet the demand for post-secondary education along the west coast.  Emergency regulations and guidance from the Bureau of Private Post-Secondary Education are available to assist institutions in re-establishing their bona fide status with the state, as well as fulfilling U.S. Department of Education requirements for state approval. Information about obtaining “approval by means of accreditation” for ACICS colleges and schools in California has been sent directly to the institutions; all ACICS member institutions are encouraged to apply for California approval to operate in a timely manner.

Key Federal Panelists Named
In the next two years ACICS will be applying for re-recognition as a reliable authority on institutional quality to the U.S. Department of Education and the Council for Higher Education Accreditation (CHEA). One of the key panels that reviews the application is the National Advisory Committee on Institutional Quality and Integrity (NACIQI), which is comprised of 18 members, including six appointed by each chamber of Congress, and six appointed by the Secretary of Education. The U.S. Senate’s nominees are

Anne D. Neal, president of the American Council of Trustees and Alumni; Bruce Cole, former chairman of the National Endowment for the Humanities; Michael Poliakoff, former vice president for academic affairs and research at the University of Colorado system; Daniel Klaich, chancellor of the Nevada System of Higher Education; State Rep. Cameron Staples of Connecticut; and Larry N. Vanderhoef, former chancellor of the University of California at Davis. Education Secretary Arne Duncan nominated six members in December; the House has yet to release its list of nominees.

‘Distributed Enterprise’ standards update: Information sharing with U.S. Department of Education on January 19
The evolution of workforce education has created an array of organizational structures and architectures to deliver quality education in an agile, student-centered manner using efficient and effective practices. The state of the art includes single-campus institutions, multi-campus institutions and organizations, and something the U.S. Department of Education recognizes as a “distributed enterprise.”  ACICS leadership has met with Department officials to clarify and strengthen the application of distributed enterprise concepts in accreditation. Based on those discussions, the Council will review draft revisions to criteria and standards in February, publish the revisions for member review and comment in March, and move toward adopting the revisions at the April Council meeting. Look for more details in correspondence from the February policy meeting.

Workshops, Webinars Go On Road
To better meet the needs of ACICS Institutions preparing for their next round of accreditation review, a robust schedule of workshops at different locations throughout the country has been established. During the first quarter of 2010:

Accreditation Workshops are scheduled for Feb. 26 in Washington, D.C. and April 30 in Chicago IL.

  • A workshop for institutions with deferrals is scheduled for Feb. 12 (not 4) in Washington.

  • A webinars to train peer evaluators will be on-line on March 26.

  • A workshop for initial applicants will be Feb. 25 in Washington, D.C. 

Visit for details about these professional development opportunities.

Update on Staff at ACICS
Alfonso Hernández has joined ACICS as Accreditation Coordinator.  Mr. Hernández formerly worked as a Co-Manager for Guess Marciano and Sales Manager for Kenneth Cole New York.  He graduated from Towson University with a Bachelor's degree in Strategic Public Relations and Integrated Communication and is fluent in Spanish.   Please welcome Hernández to the Campus Development team.