TU faculty and students engage in “campus-wide effort” to fulfill the criteria of the Higher Learning Commission.
In March, the Higher Learning Commission will visit TU to determine the university’s accreditation status.
This is no particular secret, and TU has been frank in its wish for both faculty and students to work together in “a campus-wide effort,” to ensure the university’s continued accreditation, to quote President Clancy’s recent video on the subject. TU staff wearing FISCH shirts on Mission Mondays is the newest component of this effort.
FISCH is a loose acronym for for Free Inquiry, Scholarship, Integrity of Character and Commitment to Humanity.
Clancy introduced FISCH in an email sent out to students January 9. TU is adopting FISCH as its mission, as well as the guidelines by which the HLC will judge the university.
HLC, one of the six regional institutional accreditors in the United States, does accreditation visits every ten years for universities to be able to grant degrees. The first of the HLC’s five criterions for accreditation is the efficacy and public articulation of the institution’s mission statement. According to the HLC, this judgement of efficacy includes the “the relationship between [the] mission and the diversity of society” and the mission’s “commitment to the public good.” These two particular nuances manifest in the “commitment to humanity” element of TU’s mission.
The FISCH shirts themselves fulfill HLC’s requirement for public articulation and knowledge of the mission.
Clancy presents the mission as part of “the culture of care,” which focuses on taking care of yourself and others. It also has links to “the TU commitment” by emphasizing acceptance and engagement.
According to Clancy, the implementation of the FISCH program comes after 18 months of planning with the university’s HLC team. HLC will be at the University of Tulsa March 5 and 6.