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NMC President Underscores Progress In Meeting with Accreditation Officials (June 25, 2008)

Stressing that the Northern Marianas College is on course to meet accreditation requirements by the October 15, 2008, deadline set by the Accrediting Commission for Community and Junior Colleges (ACCJC), NMC President Dr. Carmen Fernandez recently highlighted many of the college’s accomplishments in a meeting with the commission’s representatives.

Most notably, according to Dr. Fernandez, is the college’s successful efforts to resolve 11 of the 14 findings that were identified in the financial audit. The findings involve the periodic review of receivables, monitoring of interdepartmental funds, fixed asset valuation, accounting procedures, and others.

As case in point, President Fernandez reported, the college has made considerable progress toward resolving its accumulated debt to the NMI Retirement Fund, which was one of the other issues raised by the financial audit. The audit finding regarding NMC’s accumulated debt of about $3 million to the Retirement Fund has been corrected through the efforts of CNMI Governor Fitial’s assumption of debt for FY2005-2006 and approval of Public Law 16-2, which reduces NMC’s employer share from 36.77% to 11%.

During her presentation to ACCJC officials, President Fernandez also highlighted the following:

  • NMC completed the development of a compliance action plan that consolidates all accreditation-related activities required with timeframes for completion. The document has been shared extensively with the community at large.
  • The U.S. Department of Interior’s Office of Insular Affairs approved a $375,000 federal grant for consultative services to facilitate and support NMC’s program review, student learning outcomes, planning, and evaluation efforts.
  • Recent campus visits, presentations, and training sessions made by off-island guests have helped guide the campus community toward full compliance with accreditation standards. These guests have included Dr. Wilson Hess, President of the College of the Marshall Islands, Mr. Doug Dykstra, Vice Chancellor for Academic Affairs at Hawaii Community College (HCC), Dr. Ray Somera, Academic Vice President for Guam Community College, as well as ACCJC Commissioner Floyd Takeuchi and ACCJC President Dr. Barbara Beno.
  • The college has made remarkable progress with the collection and analysis of institutional data in support of program review and assessment. Already, the Office of Institutional Effectiveness has made strides in attaining and distributing student achievement data and other key information.

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