SRU earns reaffirmation of accreditation from Middle States


Lower campus

Slippery Rock University recently received notice from the Middle States Commission on Higher Education that its accreditation status has been officially been reaffirmed following SRU’s recurring evaluation period that ended this year.

July 30, 2021

SLIPPERY ROCK, Pa. — The Middle States Commission on Higher Education, a non-governmental membership association that accredits institutions of higher education, has officially reaffirmed Slippery Rock University's accreditation. The process was completed through a Statement of Accreditation Status after SRU completed its required self-study process and site visit by a team of higher education peers earlier this year.

Institutional accreditation, among other purposes, verifies a university's compliance with federal regulations, which allows schools such as SRU to offer federal financial aid to students.

MSCHE requires each member to reaffirm its status every eight years (formerly 10 years), meaning that SRU's status was last updated in 2011. The University is scheduled to go through the process again in the evaluation period of 2028-29. There will also be a midpoint peer review in 2025.

"This is great news for our University and an achievement for everyone affiliated with SRU," said Abbey Zink, SRU provost and vice president for academic affairs. "This reaffirmation shows that we are delivering on our promise to students and alumni. But living by our mission is something that continues every day, not once every eight years. We're grateful for everyone who contributed to making this a successful self-study and evaluation process."

The effort was led at the University level by an accreditation steering committee co-chaired by Mary Hennessey, assistant to the provost, and Rebecca Morrice, associate professor of theatre and department chair. The steering committee collaborated with several working groups to write the self-study report and include input from the campus and extended communities.

The peer site visit team met virtually with the SRU community, March 28-31, before providing a report to MSCHE.

"The action by Middle States reaffirms what we already know about SRU, and that's a credit to the great people who worked on this initiative to articulate who we are as a University," Hennessey said. "We had more than 100 people just on the steering committee and working groups, along with faculty, staff, students, alumni and community members who met with the visiting team under stressful circumstances because we had a virtual visit this year due to the COVID-19 pandemic. The way the campus came together to work toward this goal was really fantastic."

MSCHE did not have any qualifiers upon granting SRU its reaffirmation. More than half of evaluated institutions from the MSCHE's June meeting were required to provide follow-up reports or similar actions.

"While compliance is critical to our University's existence, the reaccreditation process is really a bedrock method for continual self-improvement," Zink said.

More information about SRU's MSCHE reaffirmation of accreditation is available on the SRU website, including a link for people with SRU email login credentials to view the University's self-study report. SRU's accreditation profile and status are also indicated on the MSCHE website.

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