NezPac College a Tamuning-based affiliate of Troy University of Troy Ala. can continue to promote its executive master’s of business administration program on Guam without fear of reprisal from other institutions.
(See “NezPac Moves Forward With EMBA Program” in the March 21 issue of the Journal.).
Public Law 28-68 Section 94 Subsection (d) states that “For post secondary institutions which seek to offer or confer any degree or diploma [should ensure] that the degrees or diplomas offered are accredited by an accrediting institution of the United States directly or through an affiliated institution recognized by the United States Department of Education. Post secondary institutions which seek to offer or confer any degree or diploma and are in the process of obtaining accreditation through a recognized USDOE accrediting body or is in the process or has received accreditation from a non-sanctioned USDOE accrediting body shall disclose its accreditation status to each student upon the start of classes.”
Mark M.Y. Zhao executive director of NezPac said “We are fine because Troy University is a fully accredited university so there is really no impact on us. The bill says that if you offer a program that is not accredited at the moment you should inform the students that you are not accredited. But it did not say you cannot (offer the program).”
Under the law post secondary institutions are allowed to continue with their program if they are in the process of being accredited. If the college is in the process of receiving accreditation or has already received accreditation from an accrediting institution not recognized by the USDOE then it must inform its students of accreditation status before the start of classes.
Cathleen Moore-Linn director of integrated marketing communication at the University of Guam told the Journal “Our concern is whether students will be getting a fair return in investment from the schools that will be coming into Guam. It is now up to the students to choose the schools and the students may not be savvy enough to choose an accredited school.”
On Sept. 21 2004 Harold L. Allen president of the university wrote to Jack Hawkins Jr. chancellor of Troy University. The letter alleged that under Guam law (17 GCA Chapter 44 Section 44 subsection 44104) all post-secondary schools offering educational services must apply for authorizations to the Guam Accreditation Board to grant degrees or diplomas.
On Nov. 15 2004 NezPac filed suit requesting damages and a restraining order against Allen the board of regents of the university and the board of trustees of the college. NezPac contended in the suit that the Guam Accreditation Board does not exist because it was abolished by the Legislature — therefore it does not need accreditation.
On Dec. 5 2004 Charles H. Troutman deputy attorney general wrote an opinion signed by Douglas B. Moylan attorney general that said the Guam Accreditation Board had not been abolished but that since it had never met since its creation on July 1 1980 “it (the board) must be treated as if it never existed.”
On July 8 NezPac College’s request for a temporary restraining order and temporary or permanent injunctions “to restrain and prevent Allen from engaging in false misleading or deceptive acts” was dismissed in its entirety by Judge Elizabeth Barrett-Anderson of the Superior Court of Guam for lack of subject matter jurisdiction.
On Sept. 30 Public Law 28-68 was signed and passed.
NezPac’s lawsuit against Allen is still ongoing. MBJ