Academic Quality Improvement Program
The Academic Quality Improvement Program (AQIP) is a process through which CMN maintains its accreditation with the Higher Learning Commission (HLC). The College of Menominee Nation believes that participation in AQIP is compatible with its culture of involvement and problem solving and is consistent with Menominee values. The AQIP process is coordinated by the AQIP Steering Team, but is in fact executed by every division of the College, each of which makes its own unique contributions.
The AQIP model (based on the Baldridge Performance Excellence Program) consists of ten principles of high performing organizations. These principles in turn lead to nine AQIP process improvement categories which are cross-referenced to the five Criteria for Accreditation. The AQIP categories follow a basic process (input/output) model. It starts with describing how the organization develops processes to understand its students’ and other stakeholders’ needs. It then looks at how the organization structures its systems and processes and utilizes its resources to meet those needs. The goal of the entire process is to help students learn. Measuring the effectiveness of its processes and using that data for improvement is the glue that holds the model together.
The two critical activities at the heart of AQIP are Action Projects and Systems Portfolios. The College of Menominee Nation must have at least three Action Projects in process at all times, with at least one project focused on “Helping Students Learn.” These projects should be well focused, highly visible and provide for wide campus involvement. The Systems Portfolio covers the nine AQIP Categories, describing processes, results, and improvement in each system, and shows evidence that CMN continues to meet the HLC’s five Criteria for Accreditation. The AQIP Systems Portfolio is a living document that describes CMN’s journey of quality improvement.
CMN AQIP Systems Portfolio
This is the first Systems Portfolio of the College since its participation in AQIP was approved in August of 2009. It was submitted on November 1, 2012. The portfolio receives a Systems Appraisal at four year intervals by a team of peers. The first appraisal will be completed by March 2013. Evidence from the Systems Appraisal and the Action Projects is used as the basis for a decision for re-affirmation of accreditation. Although a federally required quality visit occurs after seven years, the focus of the visit serves to highlight the college’s quality journey and provides only a small part of the information used in the re-affirmation decision.