HLC is one of six regional accrediting organizations for degree-granting post-secondary institutions in the United States. It serves as the accrediting body for higher education in 19 states ranging from Arizona to Wyoming and from Indiana to Colorado. Garden City Community has been accredited continuously by HLC (and its forerunner, the North Central Association) since 1975.
HLC accreditation applies to the entire institution. It includes all programs and all locations. HLC criteria includes standards related to academic programs, student services, financial stability, ongoing evaluation and improvement, governance, access to consumer information, institutional integrity, and mission and planning - to name a few.
Institutional accreditation is important for various reasons. It provides quality assurance for prospective students, the public, and elected officials. As such, accreditation status is highly valued. Accreditation is also a necessary prerequisite for institutional participation in the federal student financial assistance program.
Institutional accreditation is reviewed for reaffirmation every 10 years with a comprehensive evaluation at year 4.
Garden City Community College (GCCC) is accredited by HLC to award associate degrees as well as certificates.
What is accreditation? As defined by the Council for Higher Education Accreditation, "Accreditation is both a process and a status. It is the process of reviewing colleges, universities, institutions and programs to judge their educational quality - how well they serve students and society. The result of the process, if successful, is the award of 'accredited status'."
Why is an accredited status important to students? As explained by the Council for Higher Education Accreditation, "'Accredited status' means that students and the public can expect that a school or program lives up to its promises. It means that a student can have confidence that a degree or credential has value. Accreditation signals that the public can have confidence in the worth of an institution or program." Please watch this video and peruse the CHEA website for more information. Garden City Community College is an Institutional Member of CHEA.
Questions about Garden City Community College's accreditation? Contact the College's HLC Accreditation Liaison Officer (ALO) or the association directly at:
Higher Learning Commission,
230 South LaSalle Street, Suite 7-500,
Chicago, IL 60604-1411