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Quality Initiative search begins

Mark-Bierman
Mark Biermann works on Wartburg's new Quality Initiative that is in the process of finding a project to focus on. — Emily Novotny/TRUMPET

Wartburg College is beginning the search to find a Quality Initiative as a part of the school’s reaccreditation process.

The Dean of Faculty, Mark Biermann said the new initiative will focus on one specific area of the school to give the college a better overall excellence when reaccredited.

“The idea is to help us to be more intentional and thinking about ways that we can improve our overall operations,” Biermann said.

Although Wartburg is early in the process, many suggestions have been given for what project take on such as the study abroad program, teaching methods for writing courses and even the business administration.

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Numerous ideas and suggestions have been recommended such as the study abroad program, teaching methods for writing courses and even the business administration.

Despite the many recommendations, Biermann said the choice right now is still unclear. He said the school hopes to choose one by the end of the current academic year and begin putting it together as soon as possible.

“We are wide open at this point,” Biermann said. “None of those are written in stone. They are just ideas.”

Once chosen, Biermann said it will take about two to four years to complete. There will be a committee involved consisting of both students and faculty.

Financially, the cost behind this initiative will vary depending on what project the school decides to undertake.

The Dean said Wartburg is one of the first schools to begin putting the new idea to use.

The college is accredited with the North Central Association where its regional Higher Learning Commission or HLC reaccredits the college every 10 years.

The Quality Initiative will be part of the new Open Pathways Approach to Reaccreditation which would include a five-year intermediate interview on a 10-year cycle as well as the initiative.

Biermann said many factors such as national trends and the timing contributed to the new transition. He said Wartburg is one of the first schools to begin putting the new tactic to use.

“It’s also just a timely approach that helps us to be assured that our programs are of a quality that we like them to be,” Biermann said. “The college is constantly undergoing processes where we approve for what we do. We’re looking for ways of being more and more effective.”

Biermann said the ultimate goal is to make the school a better for both students and faculty.

“We do need to do it in order to be reaccredited. While that’s important and we want to give that proper attention, it’s not really the reason to do it. It’s to improve the way we do things here at Wartburg.”

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