Final Update: December 11, 2018


Dear Faculty, Staff, Members of the Monastic Community, Alumni, Supporters, Board of Trustees, and Students,

I am pleased to advise you that at its annual meeting in New Orleans, LA, the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges (SACSCOC) has affirmed Belmont Abbey College.  SACSCOC has found the college in full compliance with its accrediting standards and ended the one-year probation that began this time last year.

This action is the culmination of a very positive year for Belmont Abbey College. We welcomed our largest incoming traditional student class, saw the largest year ever for fundraising, received recognition from U.S. News & World Report, The Princeton Review, and The Newman Guide, and welcomed several key new staff and faculty, including Interim Provost, Dr. Linda Delene. The college has also added five new majors and four new minors for the new academic year.

To our internal team, I am grateful to all of you for your hard work this past year as we were met with more meetings, more discussion, more analysis and more presentations to address SACS’ needs. We pulled together with stronger confidence in our mission sure that God had the wind at our backs. It’s due to your commitment that SACS has removed us from probation.

As you know, in a time of challenges for small colleges everywhere, the probation raised a concern regarding our financial stability. After several meetings directly with SACS committees, including an on-site visit in which the committee found that Belmont Abbey College “was taking the appropriate steps to act in a financially responsible manner,” SACS has decided to remove the college from probation.

Belmont Abbey College now will begin the scheduled process for reaffirmation of its accreditation which is due in 2020. All institutions accredited by SACSCOC are required to undergo a review for reaffirmation of accreditation every ten years. To those who will once again be called on for assistance in this matter, I thank you all in advance for your hard work toward that goal.

I look forward in hope to a great 2019, and beyond. To faculty, staff, our Monastic Community, alums, supporters, and Board of Trustees thank you for your commitment to our mission and for your love of the Abbey. To our students, thank you for your love of the Abbey and for being the inspiration to us all that the future ahead is full of promise.

God bless,

DRT Sign

Bill Thierfelder

Questions & Answers

Accreditation is the recognition that an institution maintains standards requisite for its graduates to gain admission to other reputable institutions of higher learning or to achieve credentials for professional practice. The goal of accreditation is to ensure that education provided by institutions of higher education meets acceptable levels of quality. There are six regional higher education accreditors in the United States.
The Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges (SACSCOC) is the recognized regional accrediting body in the eleven U.S. Southern states (Alabama, Florida, Georgia, Kentucky, Louisiana, Mississippi, North Carolina, South Carolina, Tennessee, Texas and Virginia) and in Latin America for those institutions of higher education that award associate, baccalaureate, master’s or doctoral degrees.
Accreditation is a major indicator of the quality of education provided at an institution. To receive federal (and sometimes state) grants and loans, students must attend an accredited institution. Employers often require accreditation when reviewing candidate credentials, and as a stipulation for providing tuition assistance to employees or donations to an institution.
For questions concerning our accreditation please contact our Vice Provost for Assessment, Research and Accreditation  Karen Price.
  • December 2017 — BAC placed on probation regarding standard CS 3.10.1 (now standard 13.3 under the revised 2018 Principles of Accreditation)
  • September 2018 — Third Monitoring Report due to SACSCOC.
  • October 2018 — SACSCOC Special Committee to visit BAC campus.
  • December 2018 — SACSCOC affirms Belmont Abbey College is in full compliance with its accrediting standards and removes the college from probation.