Maui Community College's four-year degree in Applied Business and Information Technology receives full accreditationMaui College
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Kristen Bonilla, (808) 956-5039
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KAHULUI, Maui, Hawaiʻi - Maui Community College was notified earlier this academic year that its four-year baccalaureate degree, the Bachelor of Applied Science Degree in Applied Business and Information Technology (ABIT), has been granted initial accreditation by the Western Association of Schools and Colleges‘ (WASC) Accrediting Commission for Senior Colleges and Universities. The accreditation was granted retroactively, which means it applied to the degrees received by the ABIT program‘s first graduates in May 2007.
"The process of establishing this program and ultimately receiving accreditation for our historic first bachelor‘s degree has been a long journey and has truly been a team effort," said Maui CC Chancellor Clyde Sakamoto. "I applaud ABIT Program Coordinator David Grooms for his focus and persistence in responding to the range of accreditation requirements, and I extend my deepest congratulations and appreciation to all who have played a part in seeing this opportunity made possible for our students and community."
In the notification letter from WASC President and Executive Director Ralph Wolff to Maui CC, Wolff stated that the Commission commended the college for its responsiveness throughout the process.
The letter stated, "Maui CC has been very responsive to issues raised by previous teams and cited in action letters. Among the improvements in the three years since the ABIT program came under WASC Senior Commission review in July 2004 are the appointment of three full-time faculty members and a counselor; securing of permanent financial support from the state; enhancements to general education; and a healthy and productive discussion about the kind of applied research that is appropriate to build a baccalaureate culture in the community college."
The letter also highlighted comments from the accreditation team that visited Maui CC and its report, which included "the organization and all of its members have shown levels of openness and commitment to learning and continuous improvement that is exemplary of WASC‘s ideal of a university as a learning organization."
The Commission also offered recommendations for improving the assessment of student learning, addressing program growth and sustainability, supporting faculty scholarship, and examining the transition of students from lower to upper level courses.
The Commission plans to follow up on the progress of the ABIT program with a combined Capacity and Educational Effectiveness visit for fall 2012, which will be held jointly with the WASC Accrediting Commission for Community and Junior Colleges.
Maui CC‘s ABIT program awarded its first bachelor‘s degrees in May 2007. The degree is unique within the University of Hawaiʻi System as it is a business degree, emphasizing small- to medium-sized business management, with a strong information technology component. Specifically, the ABIT degree combines business acumen with Maui CC‘s telecommunications capacity in both bandwidth and computing to permit new businesses to emerge. For more information about the ABIT program, visit www.maui.hawaii.edu/abit.