Saint Augustine’s University is accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges (SACSCOC) to award baccalaureate and master’s degrees. Questions about the accreditation of Saint Augustine’s University may be directed in writing to the: 

Southern Association of Colleges and Schools (SACSCOC)

1866 Southern Lane

Decatur, Georgia 30033-4097

or by calling: 404.679.4500

or by using the information available on SACSCOC’s website: (



  •   CIC – Council on Independent Colleges
  •   NCICU – North Carolina Independent Colleges and Universities
  •   CRC – Cooperating Raleigh Colleges

University Leadership Team

Dr. Leslie Rodriquez-McClellon, Acting President

Dr. Ricardo Phipps, Provost & Vice President for Academic Affairs

Ms. Gwen Kea, Vice President of the Division of Business & Administration

Dr. Runell J. King, Vice President of Institutional & Sponsored Research

Mr. Stephen Latson, Interim Executive Director of Institutional Advancement

Mission and Vision

Mission Statement

The mission of Saint Augustine’s University is to sustain a learning community in which students can prepare academically, socially and spiritually for leadership in a complex, diverse and rapidly changing world.

Vision Statement

Saint Augustine’s University will be nationally recognized as a comprehensive institution with high performing students, renowned faculty, focused community engagement and a strong alumni base of change agents.

SACSCOC Reaffirmation of Accreditation 2023

Saint Augustine’s University is accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges (SACSCOC) to award baccalaureate and master’s degrees. Questions about the accreditation of Saint Augustine’s University may be directed in writing to the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges at 1866 Southern Lane, Decatur, Georgia 30033-4097, by calling 404.679.4500, or by using information available on SACSCOC’s website (

Saint Augustine’s University received initial regional accreditation in 1942 under the former name of Saint Augustine’s College. Accreditation by the Commission on Colleges signifies that the institution (1) has a mission appropriate to higher education, (2) has resources, programs, and services sufficient to accomplish and sustain that mission, and (3) maintains clearly specified educational objectives that are consistent with its mission and appropriate to the degrees it offers, and that indicate whether it is successful in achieving its stated objectives.

Reaffirmation of accreditation is a process which ensures that member institutions maintain continuing compliance with Commission policies and the Principles of Accreditation – the accreditation standards of the membership. Reaffirmation occurs every 10 years, with a fifth year interim report due in between.  Saint Augustine’s University last received reaffirmation of accreditation in 2011 and is preparing for the next reaffirmation period scheduled for 2023.

Saint Augustine’s University is currently under SACSCOC Warning for Accreditation Actions and Disclosure Statements. SACSCOC Membership Information for Saint Augustine’s University may be found at:  by entering  its name in the Institution Name space.

Reaffirmation Steering Committee

The Reaffirmation Steering Committee has been set up to address the 14 sections of the Principles of Accreditation.

Sections of the Principles of Accreditation Committee Chair
SECTION 1: The Principle of Integrity A.D. Williams/Rev. H. Stephens
SECTION 2: Mission S. McKay
SECTION 3: Basic Eligibility Standard L. McClellon 
SECTION 4: Governing Board B. Dargan
SECTION 5: Administration and Organization N. Crouse
SECTION 6: Faculty M. Melton
SECTION 7: Institutional Planning and Effectiveness R. King
SECTION 8: Student Achievement L. McClellon
SECTION 9: Educational Program Structure and Content K. Bass/S. Lewis
SECTION 10: Educational Policies, Procedures, and Practices M. I. Moses
SECTION 11: Library and Learning/Information Resources T. Nevels
SECTION 12: Academic and Student Support Services C. Love
SECTION 13: Financial and Physical Resources G. Kea
SECTION 14: Transparency and Institutional Representation C. McPhail
QEP Director/Co-Director S. Winston/E. Fournier


The Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges requires member institutions to develop a Quality Enhancement Plan (QEP) as part of the reaffirmation process. QEPs must focus on the learning outcomes and/or the environment supporting student learning and the mission of the institution, engage participation of a wide range of institutional constituencies in the development and implementation of the plan, and be based on an assessment of need. In addition, the institution must provide evidence that it has sufficient resources to implement and complete the plan.

QEP Committee

Dr. Shirlkeymu Winston, Director of QEP

Dr. Elizabeth Fournier, Co-Director of QEP

Dr. Anthony Grady, Department of Extended Studies

Dr. Charles Ibeziako, Business & Technology

Ms. Elizabeth Lee, Social Sciences

Dr. Bernard Luscans, General College

Dr. Patrick Webb, Social Sciences

Ms. Tiffany Tuma, Assistant Dean of the Center of Student Success and Accessibility

Dr. Shawn Lewis, Director of MPA Program

Dr. Kengie Bass, Dean, General College

Rev. Hershey Stephens, University Chaplain

Dr. Kelcy Walker Pope, Sciences, Mathematics & Allied Health

1st Lieutenant Isaac Owusu, ROTC/Military Science

Dean Janelle Watts, Dean of Students

Ms. Gwen Kea, Business and Finance

Dr. Cindy Love, Student Affairs

Ms. Cianna Jackson, Marketing & Communications

Mr. Angelo Williams, Marketing & Communications

Dr. Marnie Arkenberg, Academic Assessment

Dr. Laverne Weldon, SACSCOC Liaison

Prof. Jana Washington, English

Dr. Mark A. Melton, Interim Provost – Ex Offico

Student Achievement Data

Substantive Change Policy


Saint Augustine’s University is accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges (SACSCOC) and complies with its Substantive Change Policy and Procedures. Saint Augustine’s University (SAU) is required to submit any substantive changes to SACSCOC for notification and/or approval. A substantive change is a significant modification or expansion of the nature and scope of an accredited institution. The purpose of SAU’s substantive change policy and procedure is to ensure that all substantive changes are reported to SACSCOC in a timely fashion as required by Substantive Change Policy and Procedures. Substantive change includes high-impact, high-risk changes and changes that can impact the quality of educational programs and services.


After consultation with the Director of Accreditation and Compliance to determine the nature of the change, the substantive change documentation must be submitted to the Chair of the Department and Dean of the School. Following their approval, the proposal for change is submitted to the Curriculum Council and Faculty Assembly before it moves to the Office of the Provost for final approval. The substantive change, if approved, is then sent to SACSCOC for review and approval. This is in accordance with the change process as outlined in the Curriculum Council Handbook.

Substantive changes, including those required by federal regulations, include:

  • Substantially changing the established mission or objectives of an institution or its programs.
  • Changing the legal status, form of control, or ownership of an institution.
  • Changing the governance of an institution.
  • Merging / consolidating two or more institutions or entities.
  • Acquiring another institution or any program or location of another institution.
  • Relocating an institution or an off-campus instructional site of an institution (including a branch campus).
  • Offering courses or programs at a higher or lower degree level than currently authorized.
  • Adding graduate programs at an institution previously offering only undergraduate programs (including degrees, diplomas, certificates, and other for-credit credential).
  • Changing the way an institution measures student progress, whether in clock hours or credit-hours; semesters, trimesters, or quarters; or time-based or non–time-based methods or measures.
  • Adding a program that is a significant departure from the existing programs, or method of delivery, from those offered when the institution was last evaluated.
  • Initiating programs by distance education or correspondence courses.
  • Adding an additional method of delivery to a currently offered program.
  • Entering into a cooperative academic arrangement.
  • Entering into a written arrangement under 34 C.F.R. § 668.5 under which an institution or organization not certified to participate in the title IV Higher Education Act (HEA) programs offers less than 25% (notification) or 25-50% (approval) of one or more of the accredited institution’s educational programs. An agreement offering more than 50% of
    one or more of an institution’s programs is prohibited by federal regulation.
  • Substantially increase or decreasing the number of clock hours or credit hours awarded or competencies demonstrated, or an increase in the level of credential awarded, for successful completion of one or more programs.
  • Adding competency-based education programs.
  • Adding each competency-based education program by direct assessment.
  • Adding programs with completion pathways that recognize and accommodate a student’s prior or existing knowledge or competency.
  • Awarding dual or joint academic awards.
  • Re-opening a previously closed program or off-campus instructional site.
  • Adding a new off-campus instructional site/additional location including a branch campus.
  • Adding a permanent location at a site at which an institution is conducting a teach-out program for students of another institution that has ceased operating before all students have completed their program of study.
  • Closing an institution, a program, a method of delivery, an off-campus instructional site,
    or a program at an off-campus instructional site.


Dr. Ricardo Phipps

Provost & Vice President of Academic Affairs & Student Experience


Dr. LaVerne R. Weldon

Director of Accreditation and Compliance