Gila Community Provisional Community College District, Eastern Arizona College Reach Agreement in Principle Regarding Terms of Accreditation Transition

Jul 28, 2023

After Meeting with Senate President Petersen, EAC Agrees To Continue Admitting New GCC Students As Termination Date of Contract Is Extended Until 2025

PAYSON – Students seeking to begin coursework at Gila Community College campuses for the upcoming Fall 2023 semester can continue to do so under an agreement in principle reached between the Gila County Provisional Community College and its accreditation partner, Eastern Arizona College (EAC). The agreement in principle – which extends the termination date of the contract between the two organizations until June 30, 2025 – comes on the heels of a Tuesday, July 25th meeting with Arizona Senate President Warren Petersen, who intervened in the matter at the request of GCC leadership.

“We’re elated that EAC has agreed to do what’s right for the students of Gila County,” said Dr. Jan Brocker, the President of the GCC Provisional District Governing Board. “We look forward to implementing the orderly transition we proposed when we gave EAC 14 months’ notice that GCC would seek a new accreditation solution. This takes the pressure off our students and staff, which has been our top priority since Day One.”

EAC’s proposal, outlined in a letter from President Todd Haynie, essentially meets the terms laid out by GCC’s Board and Interim President Janice Lawhorn in communication with Haynie and in the meeting with Sen. Petersen. Haynie wrote: “EAC will offer courses and programs in Gila County at the Gila campuses for a final two-year period through, Spring 2025.” Per the letter:

  • EAC will admit one final cohort of two-year students in Fall 2023 such as nursing, cosmetology, dual enrollment, and CTED programs.
  • No additional cohort of students will be admitted for two-year programs after the Fall 2023 semester.
  • For one-year programs, EAC will admit students until the Fall 2024 semester, after which no new students will be admitted for one-year programs.
  • In the final semester of the contract, Spring 2025, only semester-length credentials and classes that allow students to finish their currently declared degree or cert will be offered.
  • Courses that are single semester in length, including personal interest courses, will continue to be offered through the Spring 2025 semester.

“We are tremendously thankful that Sen. Petersen took the time to listen and to meet with both sides,” said Brocker. “The Senate President’s mandate to solve this situation immediately was key, as was his willingness to enforce some degree of accountability for the potential loss of educational opportunities by our students. This represents a huge win for all concerned and we look forward to working with EAC to finalize the details ASAP.”