By Kyle Peveto, Staff Writer
The College of Business Administration is nearing the end of a five year process to become accredited by the Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business.
COBA is in the fourth year of candidacy for accreditation and is beginning a self-evaluation to submit a report with the AACSB in May.
In October of 2003 a three-person team will visit the university to evaluate COBA faculty and students to make an accreditation decision.
The AACSB is the premier international accrediting body for schools of business. Only 384 institutions in the nation are accredited by the association. About 41 percent of AACSB schools are private.
“AACSB validates what you’ve been saying about yourself,” said Jozell Brister, associate professor in COBA and director of accreditation. “It’ll be a real honor if we get it.”
After the AACSB team visits ACU, it will either accredit COBA outright, accredit it with concerns, defer accreditation for a year or not grant any accreditation at all. If an institution is not accredited immediately, it is given three years to meet the association’s standards.
“Hardly any schools are just accredited,” Brister said. Most are accredited and given recommendations on aspects of the program on which to work, she added.
“We think we do have a good chance,” she said.
Separate accreditation can be given to different parts of business schools, but COBA is seeking accreditation for its entire program.
Employers often visit campuses of AACSB schools more often, and graduate schools are attracted to applicants who graduate from them, Brister said.
“It would look better to people I interview with-that I came with a good education,” said Bethany Stewart, senior finance major from Palestine.
COBA is already an AACSB member, along with 647 other educational institutions in the United States. Membership in the association allows COBA to attend workshops and seminars sponsored by AACSB.
COBA is currently accredited by the Association of Collegiate Business Schools and Programs (ACBSP).