Today more than 100 faculty, staff and administrators gathered as a community to hear the report from the Western Association of Schools and Colleges (WASC) Visiting Committee as one of the final steps in our Accreditation process. As you know, San Diego Continuing Education’s (SDCE's) Self-Study document outlines major strengths and key issues that we have identified through our tremendous efforts to standardize and centralize processes and procedures throughout SDCE, and to create and measure accountability. The Visiting Committee recognized and applauded this work, and today’s report was very comprehensive and overwhelmingly positive.
In addition to recognizing the multiple major strengths and areas where SDCE provides excellence, the Visiting Committee made several recommendations in their report, which are summarized below. SDCE is already working toward accomplishing these areas for growth as part of our Strategic Planning process, Program Review, and our overall efforts toward integrated planning throughout our organizations. These themes within SDCE (centralized, strategic and integrated) are helping us shine.
I would like to take this opportunity to congratulate the faculty, staff and administrators in our great organization who put student success at the center of our daily work. I would also like to take this additional opportunity to recognize Dr. Kate Alder, SDCE’s Vice President of Instruction and Accreditation Steering Committee, co-chairs Dr. Barbara Pongsrikul and Corinne Layton, and self-study lead author Magdalena Kwiatkowski for their leadership and outstanding efforts to help SDCE achieve this positive report from WASC’s Visiting Committee.
The message today was an affirmation that SDCE must continue to do more of the good work we’re already doing. If you were unable to attend today’s presentation, please use this link to watch the video report from the Visiting Committee. We should all stand tall with pride today for WASC's acknowledgement of the amazing work SDCE carries out to support student success and equity.
Carlos O. Turner Cortez, Ph.D.
Recommendations/Comments Identified by WASC:
- There is a need for a more robust, electronic student information system at SDCE so that we are able to track outcomes and data more efficiently (e.g. student information, student assessment and course completion). Having this data available will help us make decisions centered around student success.
- As SDCE grows, the facilities and infrastructures must keep up. For example, there is already a need for more classroom and operational space; additional hardware and software, and continuing to upgrade technology will be essential.
- As SDCE continues to focus on student persistence and success, we must embrace ideas such as Open Educational Resources, tutoring for students, and additional articulation agreements that help students transition to credit.
- A structure is needed for SDCE to maintain a feedback loop that is responsible for gathering and reporting information back to include external stakeholders such as community partners.