September 19, 2014

Accreditation being sought by SVGCC

The St Vincent and the Grenadines Community College (SVGCC) has begun the process of seeking accreditation and the first step of this process was achieved in November 2013, when the college received a certificate of Registration from the National Accreditation Board (NAB).{{more}}

This point was made yesterday by deputy director of the SVGCC Nigel Scott, in a release issued to the media.

Scott’s release came after questions about the accreditation status of the SVGCC were raised earlier this week, by Leader of the Opposition Arnhim Eustace.

As he spoke on his weekly radio programme on Nice Radio on Monday, and again at a press conference on Wednesday, Eustace questioned whether the college was accredited after a young woman with an Associates Degree from the SVGCC was denied entry to the University of the West Indies.

Scott, in the release also made the point that accreditation is a process and can only be granted by an Accreditation body such as the National Accreditation Board of SVG.

“Educational institutions like the UWI cannot provide accreditation. They can provide recognition for and articulation to their programmes. This we have sought and continue to seek,” the deputy director said.

“From our experience, well qualified students with excellent grades in whatever programme will always be considered for related higher education programmes. The challenge comes when there are poor grades and low GPA’s. There are large numbers of SVGCC alumni pursuing higher education at reputable institutions on the strength of their SVGCC earned Associate Degrees. When these institutions are not sure about the qualification, they will contact the SVGCC for course outlines or other information to seek to make an equivalency check.

“Rome was not built in a day. Our regional UWI which has been around since 1948 has just gone through its first Accreditation exercise. Yet the quality of the graduates and its programmes over the years has meant its degrees have been recognized worldwide even prior to accreditation. The SVGCC is a relatively young institution that has already made significant strides. We offer on Franchise arrangements Accredited Bachelor’s Degrees from Accredited Institutions: UWI, UTECH and Jamaica Theological Seminary,” Scott explained.

He said the SVGCC has been approached by the UWI towards making the College a University College of the UWI.

“These discussions are in their early days but speak to the cordial and professional nature of the current and future relations between the SVGCC and the UWI,” he said.

Strengthening his point, the deputy director said graduates of the SVGCC are functioning effectively in all areas of SVG and the world over.

“We will continue to work with the Ministry of Education, the National Accreditation Board and all other willing stakeholders to strengthen our structures and systems for the benefit of all Vincentians,” Scott said.

According to the release from the SVGCC, the SVGCC Act of 2005 makes it clear that one of the functions of the College is “to offer courses leading to degrees, to confer degrees and grant diplomas, certificates, other awards and honours as are usually conferred by similar institutions”.