Citing enrollment increases, new construction without debt, and “one of the hardest working and dedicated faculties in American higher education,” the Higher Learning Commission of the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools has granted Lindenwood University the maximum 10-year accreditation.
Lindenwood officials made the announcement this week after receiving confirmation from the HLC.
“We are happy with the outcome,” said Lindenwood President Dennis Spellmann. “But we expected this. Our board, faculty and staff work hard to put students and their educational needs first.”
An HLC team visited Lindenwood recently for an exhaustive week of review and interviews. The accreditation was granted based on observations, interviews with faculty, staff and students, and the university’s own self-study, which was prepared by a 22-member steering committee.
Notable items in the HLC team’s 41-page report included the following:
*The main campus continues to serve the core of the university, being home to approximately 2,400 full-time undergraduates. Intercollegiate sports are a major focus of the university and have proven to be a significant factor in its recent recruiting success.
*Prudent financial management has generated spectacular recent surpluses of $15-$20 million per year…as a result, the institution functions without debt. The university pours those surpluses back into capital improvements and scholarships and financial aid for students.
*During interviews the faculty and others applauded the administration for the university’s financial solvency while at the same time generating tremendous growth in new and renovated buildings.
*The university has an organizational structure that is lean at the top, with lines of authority that are clear and unambiguous. The administrative work of the university reports through 12 senior staff directly to the president who is a hands-on day-to-day decision maker.
*Lindenwood is blessed with what is arguably one of the hardest-working and dedicated teaching faculties in American higher education. Students made comments that illustrated the high value they place on the faculty and staff for their effectiveness as instructors and the care and attention they give to students.
*Campus expansion such as in Belleville, Ill., and the Daniel Boone Home, and the proposed $100 million master plan demonstrate a palpable momentum and commitment to students and to the future.
*Review of their background and face-to-face conversation revealed a board of trustees that understands and implements its responsibility to provide oversight for the university’s future programs, finances and facilities.
*Evidence of increasing university commitment to and investment in technology bode well for the university’s continued ability to accomplish its purpose.
*Lindenwood has excelled at enhancing the physical infrastructure of the university. Evidence of this is construction of new buildings, renovation of old buildings, acquisitions near campus and at remote sites, adding parking spaces, and making a beautiful campus even more aesthetically attractive.