Accountancy Department makes history

July 31, 2009

The Accountancy Department at LaGrange College has major bragging rights after getting word that it is the first – and only – department   in the world to earn accountancy accreditation from the Association of Collegiate Business Schools and Programs.

Cindi Bearden, associate professor of accountancy and chair of the accreditation team, said it is truly a historic occasion.

“LaGrange College is the first school in the world to earn ACBSP accreditation under the new accounting standards,” she said. “The Business programs at LaGrange College, already accredited by ACBSP, were reaffirmed at the same time.”

Bearden said the faculty, staff and students worked together to help the department earn its elite designation.

“We started this process three years ago,” she said. “Each one of us is very proud of our programs and our students, and this recognition belongs to everyone.”

The accreditation team visited campus the first week of March, and were met by something no one had expected.

“They got here the Sunday it snowed,” Bearden said. “Of course the campus was closed, so we had to drive all of our documents to the hotel, and had to rearrange everyone’s schedules. Who would have imagined we would have snow – in March?”

The weather didn’t seem to affect how the site team viewed LaGrange College.

 “This is the best self-study document I’ve ever seen,” one member said. The group chose the College’s self-study as a “best practices” document.

ACBSP was established in 1988 and is the only business accrediting organization for both associate and baccalaureate/graduate degree institutions.  It has more than 612 member institutions in 26 countries.

The executive director of the ACBSP said the accreditation is a reflection of the College’s goal of providing the best education to all of its students.

“LaGrange College has shown its commitment to teaching excellence by participating in the accreditation process, achieving accreditation and continuing the process of quality improvement,” said Douglas G. Viehland.  “This accreditation is evidence of LaGrange College’s commitment to quality business and accountancy education.”

The designation certifies that the teaching and learning processes within an institution meet the rigorous educational standards established by the ACBSP.  The ratification of accreditation by ACBSP covers a 10-year period during which time LaGrange College must continually reaffirm its superiority through quality assurance reports.

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