Lansing, MI (December 15, 2014) – With the abundance of career colleges and technical schools opening over the last few decades, it can be confusing to understand how quality assurance applies to different institutions. One standard to consider is accreditation - with an accredited institution, a student has some assurance of receiving an education that meets established quality levels and criteria, based on third-party, objective evaluation.
While most states require career college and technical schools to be licensed or certified, some do not. Accreditation is also not required by law in all states.
“Accrediting organizations will regularly visit their approved school,” explained Todd Brewer, Vice President of Compliance for Career Quest Learning Centers, Inc., which operates campuses in Lansing and Jackson, Michigan. “These on-site visits ensure a certain quality standard and that we’re delivering what we promise to our students. They also make sure we’re following our established polices and procedures – so if it’s in our school catalog, a student can be assured that’s what we’re doing.”
Brewer’s job is to ensure the Career Quest campuses are not only following internal policies, but that they’re also meeting the requirements of regulatory bodies including its accreditor, the State of Michigan and the U.S. Department of Education. This means he and his team are involved in understanding national and state education regulations, along with constant updates; ensuring the campuses are in compliance; and reviewing student outcomes. Furthermore, it is the accredited institutions that are qualified to make available Federal Student Aid to eligible students, including grants and loans.
"Since its inception in 1995, Career Quest Learning Centers has continuously strived to follow its mission to 'provide students with the skills required for employment and/or career advancement,'” Brewer added. “In an effort to better prepare its students, Career Quest Learning Centers became an accredited institution of the Council on Occupational Education (COE) in 2004.”
“The standards this institution is required to meet are designed to help confirm our career training and available resources are current and offered at high quality,” Brewer said. “It is the partnership we share with COE that can help prospective students, current students, local employers, and community partners feel confident Career Quest Learning Centers is governed by regulatory organizations and is held accountable for its educational services including, but not limited to, graduation and job placement rates.”
The COE website says that through its accreditation process, it seeks to stimulate the following:
- Validation of job skills;
- Certification of skills for local, state, regional, and national application;
- Portability of skill credentials;
- Placement of graduates in jobs related to preparation received;
- Facilitation of partnerships and consortia through which the United States can continue to compete successfully in the global economy; and
- Linkages among employers, policymakers, business and industry, labor, and other parties with vital interests in technical education.
“It all comes back to results – for our graduates and our employers,” said Brewer. “We are responsible for ensuring our graduates are ready and prepared for the careers they’re seeking after graduation. Accreditation is one step toward ensuring we do just that”.
As a founding member of Career Quest, Brewer says, “I am honored the guiding principles of this institution have remained unchanged."
Students interested in learning more about their educational options, should call the Career Quest admissions offices at Lansing 877-481-4930 / Jackson 877-365-8144.
Since 1995, Career Quest has implemented its mission to provide students with the skills required for employment and/or career advancement, by educating and training them with the equipment and technology found in the current workplace.