College of Western Idaho (CWI) is nearing the final steps to garner approval for independent accreditation through the Northwest Commission on Colleges and Universities (NWCCU). The College will host NWCCU representatives for a campus visit, Oct. 5-7, while also submitting its year seven self-evaluation report to the Commission.
The NWCCU will review the year seven report and findings from the committee’s site visit to determine whether or not to recommend CWI for accreditation. While pursuing independent accreditation, CWI has delivered college credit instruction, certificates, and degrees through a memorandum of understanding with the College of Southern Idaho.
Independent accreditation will allow CWI more flexibility to modify curriculum and add credit programs to best meet the needs of the local community. Accreditation is also required for CWI and its enrolled students to continue accessing federal funds to support teaching, research, and student financial aid. Finally, regional accreditation provides a way for post-secondary institutions to ensure quality instruction and service, as well as institutional improvement, by voluntarily submitting to a regulatory process.
Since February 2012, CWI has been recognized by the NWCCU as a candidate for accreditation. Since earning candidacy status, the school has been in a progression period involving a thorough review of all relevant requirements. CWI has also hosted the NWCCU for two campus visits.
A decision on CWI’s independent accreditation status could be determined as early as January 2017.