Fisk University Accreditation Reaffirmed


Contact Information:

Edwina Harris Hamby, Ph.D.                     Office: 615-329-8530

Fisk University                                           Cell: 615-473-7325

1000 Seventeenth Avenue North     

Nashville, Tennessee 37208             


Dear, Alumni, and Friends,

Please accept my sincerest thanks and gratitude for the tremendous support you have provided for the past ten months, and especially for our recruitment and fundraising efforts.  Because of you, our accreditation has been reaffirmed.  I ask that you continue to work with us as we move forward to make the Fisk Renaissance a reality.

Best Regards,

H. James Williams

Fisk University’s Accreditation Reaffirmed

Nashville, TN, December 10, 2013 – Fisk University announced that the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools’ Commission on Colleges (SACSCOC) reaffirmed its accreditation and removed the probation sanction today.

Under the dynamic and visionary leadership of President H. James Williams, who took the helm on February 1, 2013, the University engaged in a series of strategic initiatives to address all of SACSCOC’s concerns.  “In the past couple of years we had deficits and had to make the case of why we had deficits,” Dr. Williams said. “This time, we’ve finished the 2012-13 year in the black, exceeded our fundraising goals for 2013, and increased our enrollment in Fall 2012 and Fall 2013. We’re in the black for the first quarter of this fiscal year (2013-14) and have made a number of fundamental changes in how we handle our financial affairs,” said Dr. Williams.

Noting that the University’s fiscal operations, recruitment, retention, fundraising and communications/public relations efforts have all been recalibrated to function more effectively, Dr. Williams said,  “At the end of the day, SACSCOC expects institutions to show that they are in compliance with the Principles of Accreditation and are financially viable.  Fisk University is, in fact, in full compliance and financially viable.”

Dr. Williams indicated that the entire Fisk University family is jubilant that SACSCOC recognized their Herculean efforts to assure a positive outcome.  “Today is sort of another ‘Jubilee Day’ for Fisk University.  October 6, 1871 was the day our original Jubilee Singers left the campus on a fundraising mission to save Fisk.  December 10, 2013marks the day that Fisk received its reaffirmation without a blemish and enables Fisk to continue the excellent work it has performed for almost 148 years.  We began our Fisk Renaissance in February, and now that our accreditation has been reaffirmed, we will move forward full steam ahead,” he said.

SACSCOC is the regional commission responsible for accrediting degree-granting institutions in Alabama, Florida, Georgia, Kentucky, Louisiana, Mississippi, North Carolina, South Carolina, Tennessee, Texas, Virginia, and some institutions in Latin America. The Board of Trustees of Southern Association of Colleges and Schools’ Commission on Colleges is the representative body of the 804-member College Delegate Assembly and is charged with carrying out the accreditation process. To gain or maintain ccreditation, an institution must comply with Commission policies and with all standards contained in the Principles of Accreditation.                                                                                                                                                                                                                   

About Fisk University

Founded in 1866, Fisk University is Nashville’s first institution of higher education and currently ranks in the top 20% of all liberal arts institutions in the nation according to The Washington Monthly.  Fisk is the fourth highest ranked institution in Tennessee and the highest ranked Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs) in Forbesmagazine’s 2013 edition of “America’s Best Colleges.” Fisk has been ranked in The Princeton Review’s “Best Southeastern Colleges” publication for 21 consecutive years.  U.S. News and World Report ranks Fisk #146 in the elite Tier One group of 246 liberal arts institutions selected for the distinction among the 1,400 colleges and universities in the nation, and Fisk is one of only four HBCUs ranked in Tier One. Fisk has earned four R & D 100Awards for work in the creation of radiation detectors developed in collaboration with several national laboratories and corporations. No other HBCU has ever earned an R & D 100 Award.  According to the National Science Foundation, Fisk produces more African-Americans who go on to earn doctoral degrees in the natural sciences than any school in the nation. For more information on Fisk University, please visit

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