ABHE Accreditation “Candidacy Status” Achieved

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Press Release: 

LABI College is proud to announce that our College has achieved “Candidate Status” through the Association for Biblical Higher Education! 


Unlike traditional regional accreditors that approve mostly secular and some Christian universities, Biblical Accreditation requires special attention, emphasis and


assurances that “Bible and Ministry” objectives are at the core of the learning experience.  On November 15th, 2015, LABI College submitted to the Association of Biblical Higher Education (ABHE) an extensive portfolio of over 1,000 pages of reports, assessments and related documents representing several years of demonstrated progress. This portfolio’s review led to ABHE’s approval for an official “Candidacy” site visit this past fall (October 2016). Additionally, and over the last couple of years, President

Dr. Marty Harris

has been invited to serve as an official ABHE Accreditation Site Team Evaluator for several ABHE Bible colleges/universities. These experiences in working with ABHE provided a good foundation for LABI College as we prepared for our own site visit. Over the past several years, the LABI community (administration, staff, faculty, and students) has cultivated a climate of academic excellence, institutional assessment, and measured and reported its success. We have prepared our faculty, demonstrated effectiveness in learning, improved our educational product and quality, and addressed all of the accreditation standards needed to achieve “ABHE Candidacy.” The report (previously provided) highlighting a recent ABHE visit last fall outlines all of the commendations and recommendations provided to LABI.

Why is accreditation important for LABI College:

  • For the public, accreditation promotes assurances of standards, excellence, and quality;
  • For prospective students/parents, accreditation serves a consumer protection purpose;
  • For prospective employers/churches, it provides assurance that the curriculum is appropriate;
  • For the church, and ministerial profession, it promotes the notion of rigorous preparation;
  • For the federal and state levels and other public agencies, it helps to establish financial aid;
  • For private banks/lenders, it provides a level of assurances for private lending opportunities;
  • For foundation grants, it represents a solid indicator of a program’s quality and viability;
  • For the College, it provides a foundation for articulation agreements and transfer of credit;
  • It promotes self-evaluation/continuous improvement and provides for accountability;
  • Accreditation enhances the College’s local, regional, and national academic reputation.

On Tuesday, February 7th, 2017, Academic Dean Rudy Estrada, Chief of Staff Nehemias Romero, and President Dr. Marty Harris stood before the Commission on Accreditation as they prepared to vote on our Candidacy status – a pre-accreditation status and the last step before full accreditation. The commission is made up of over a dozen commissioners, most who are college/university presidents who work closely with ABHE and vote on accreditation matters. At this meeting, we were given the opportunity to present important updates concerning our progress on accreditation standards. After presenting our report and answering questions from the Commission, LABI College was officially recognized with Candidate status!

This new level of accreditation (Candidacy) is the highest level of accreditation achieved in LABI’s 90 year history. Candidacy status represents the work and effort of hundreds spanning decades. It is a historic accomplishment and the implications are unprecedented. Candidacy status grants LABI College the eligibility to apply for Federal Student Aid through the Department of Education. This includes Federal Grants and State Grants for students. The next steps consist of applying for and preparing for this Federal Student Aid.

From our Board of Trustees, administration, staff, and students, we whole-heatedly thank you for your support, contribution, and prayers for our accreditation goals and our College. While this is a remarkable achievement, this also represents a new beginning in our goals and progress. Let us continue to make strides in our service for our beloved College, our students, our churches, and God’s Kingdom with and through hope and excellence.



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