Community college accredited

A degree from Keweenaw Bay Ojibwa Community College carries a little more weight these days.

Last week, KBOCC received its letter of accreditation from the Higher Learning Commission of the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools.

Students will continue to receive the same great education they have been getting, but they will be able to benefit more from graduating from the college.

“At this point, we’re poised to expand our programs and be involved in some further development,” dean of instruction Lynn Aho said. “But we’ve been maintaining high standards all along, so the students won’t see any remarkable or dramatic changes this fall.  Where they’ll get the benefits more is after they graduate.”

The long process toward accreditation officially began with the college’s application in 2005, and certain changes had to be made.

“One of those things was a formal separation of the college from the tribe,” accreditation coordinator Treneice Marshall said. “So, the college is no longer a tribal department. It is in of itself its own entity. It’s always been open to other students, but in terms of governance, the college has its board separate from the tribal council which was a big distinction that needed to be made.”

Thanks to the accreditation, current students and even recent graduates will benefit from KBOCC’s status.