Middle States Accreditation 

Middle States Accreditation

Delaware College of Art and Design is an accredited institution and a member of the Middle States Commission on Higher Education (MSCHE), www.msche.org. DCAD’s accreditation status is non-compliance probation. The Commission’s most recent action on the institution’s accreditation status, on April 25, 2024, was to place the College on probation. MSCHE is an institutional accrediting agency recognized by the U.S. Secretary of Education.  

MSCHE accredits degree-granting colleges and universities in the Middle States region, which includes Delaware, the District of Columbia, Maryland, New Jersey, New York, Pennsylvania, Puerto Rico, and the U.S. Virgin Islands. The Commission is a voluntary, non-governmental membership association that defines, maintains, and promotes educational excellence across institutions with diverse missions, student populations and resources. It examines each institution as a whole, rather than specific programs within institutions. 

DCAD has been independently accredited by MSCHE since 2015. Prior to being independently accredited, DCAD was incorporated in the State of Delaware December 1996 as “The Pratt-Corcoran Association at the Delaware College of Art and Design.” Recognized by the Delaware Commission on Higher Education, DCAD originally operated as a branch campus of the Corcoran College of Art and Design. In 2007, the Middle States Commission on Higher Education granted DCAD initial independent accreditation. DCAD legally separated from Pratt University and The Corcoran in 2014, becoming an independent institution. DCAD’s last reaffirmation occurred in 2015 and the College completed its most recent comprehensive self-study evaluation and site visit in spring 2024. 

Delaware Department of Education

State of Delaware Department of Education
Dr. Mark A. Holodick, Secretary
Townsend Building
401 Federal Street, Suite 2
Dover, DE 19901-3639

DCAD’s Mission, Vision, & Values


Delaware College of Art and Design empowers emerging creatives to take artistic risks and engage with inclusive and diverse communities.    


Delaware College of Art and Design envisions a future as a nationally recognized powerhouse of creativity, education, inspiration, and engagement.    


Dedication, Creativity, Accomplishment, and Diversity    

Institutional Priorities

The Institutional Priorities defined by DCAD reflect the most important areas as identified by a combination of current metrics and surveys. Surveys were issued to all campus stakeholders: students, staff, faculty, and the Board of Trustees. The Institutional Priorities listed below represent key pillars of DCAD’s existence, areas that must be continuously focused on and improved in order for the College to succeed and grow.  

DCAD has identified four institutional priorities for the purposes of its MSCHE Self-Study: 

  • Student Success 
  • Student Experience 
  • Financial Strength 
  • Diversity, Equity, Accessibility, and Inclusion  

Accreditation Process Timeline

  • Self-Study process initiated
  • Self-Study Co-chairs attended MSCHE Self-Study Institute
  • Steering Committee appointed
  • MSCHE VP liaison appointed
  • Working Groups determined
  • Key Constituencies surveyed and consulted to define Self-Study Institutional Priorities
  • Evidence Inventory Repository developed
  • Steering Committee completed draft Self-Study Design; submitted to MSCHE April 11
  • MSCHE VP liaison initial site visit (virtual) to meet with key constituencies completed April 25,
  • External consultant determined and contracted to support DCAD Steering Committee and Working Groups
  • Working Group chair and member orientations held by Steering Committee on May 11 and 17
  • Steering Committee finalizes revisions to draft Self-Study Design; submitted to MSCHE June 3
  • Working Group training led by consultant scheduled for June 7
  • Working Group summer priorities determined by Steering Committee and assigned
  • Evidence Inventory Repository development ongoing
  • Public Self-Study process communication plan initiated
  • Working Group training led by consultant scheduled for September
  • September, Working Group research begins
  • September, monthly Steering Committee and Working Group chair monthly meetings initiated
  • September, bi-weekly Working Group meetings initiated
  • November 15, Working Group preliminary draft reports due to Steering Committee
  • MSCHE VP liaison provides DCAD with Evaluation Team Chair candidates
  • MSCHE selects Evaluation Team Chair
  • Evidence Inventory Repository development ongoing
  • Public Self-Study process communication ongoing
  • January 15, Steering Committee provide feedback to Working Groups regarding preliminary draft report
  • Working Groups research continues
  • March 15, Working Group refined draft reports due to Steering Committee
  • Middle States selects evaluation team chair and team members; DCAD approves the selection
  • Communication with MSCHE VP liaison ongoing
  • Evidence Inventory Repository development ongoing
  • Public Self-Study process communication ongoing
  • April 15, Steering Committee provide feedback to Working Groups regarding draft reports
  • Working Groups research continues
  • Evidence Inventory Repository development ongoing
  • Public Self-Study process communication ongoing
  • Working Groups research continues
  • Steering Committee begins drafting Self-Study Report
  • Evidence Inventory Repository nearing final inventory
  • Public Self-Study process communication ongoing
  • September 15, Working Group final draft reports due to Steering Committee
  • September 15 – November 15, Steering Committee completes draft Self-Study Report
  • November 15, draft Self-Study Report submit draft Self-Study Report for review and approval by DCAD President
  • November 15, Steering Committee shares draft Self-Study Report with DCAD community for review
  • December 1, President feedback provided to Steering Committee; Committee finalizes Self-Study Report
  • December 15, Steering Committee shares final Self-Study Report with DCAD community
  • Evidence Inventory Repository finalized
  • Public Self-Study process communication ongoing
  • January 10, Steering Committee sends final Self-Study Report to President
  • Secure signatures of President and Board Chair for Certification Statements
  • Finalize Self-Study Evidence Inventory resources and appendices
  • January 30, upload Self-Study Report and Evidence Inventory to MSCHE Portal
  • Send final Self-Study Report to Board of Directors
  • Public Self-Study process communication ongoing
  • March – April, Host Evaluation Teams for Reaccreditation Visit
  • April Receive Evaluation Team Report
  • May, compile responses to Evaluation Team Report
  • May, convene Steering Committee to review Evaluation Report and results of visits
  • June, communicate action by Commission to DCAD community regarding reaccreditation
  • Status of DCAD MSCHE Accreditation Self-Study process communicated to public


Steering Committee


Katy Ro, Dean of Academics though 06/05/23

Roles: Organization, Document Design, Process Leader    

David Czarnecki, Registrar

Roles: ALO, Organization, Document Design, Process Leader   


Megan Johnson, Director, Library

Roles: Evidence Inventory Leader

Kristen Blanchard, Executive Assistant, Director, Special Projects   

Roles: On-Site Coordination for Visits, Working Group  Coordination  

Lise Dubé-Scherr, Dean, Continuing & Professional Studies

Roles: Project Manager, Document Design, Process Leader   

Working Groups

DCAD’s Working Groups as of May 2022 (updated April 2023) are:

Mission, Planning, Resource Allocation, & Compliance with Federal Regulatory Requirements 
Lise Dubé-Scherr (Dean of Continuing & Professional Studies)
Randle Reed (Director of Admissions) through 01/15/23
Rich Savona (Chief Financial Officer) 
Muriel Mhloyi (Bursar) 
Bob Bickey (Studio Technician) 
Kristen Blanchard (Executive Assistant; Director of Special Projects) – moved to WG Co-Chair, September 2022
Leadership, Governance & Integrity, & Student Experience   
Meg Clifton North (Director of Development and Alumni Engagement) through 09/15/22
Ron Brignac (Program Chair, Photography) 
Kristen Blanchard (Executive Assistant, Director of Special Projects)
Joy Barrist (Board Member) - adhoc
Sen. Sarah McBride (former Board Member) – adhoc
Director of Student Life – effective August 2022
John Breakey (Program Chair, Graphic Design) through 12/31/22
Josh Hollingsworth (Curator and Gallery Coordinator)  – adhoc
Kathleen Ellis-Foultz (Director of Financial Aid) – effective June 2022
Student Learning & Institutional Effectiveness   
Katy Ro (Academic Dean) through 06/05/23
Rachel Bomze (Program Chair, Fine Arts) through 12/31/22
David Czarnecki (Registrar/ALO)  
Megan Johnson, Director, Library effective 06/05/23
Tad Sare (Program Chair, Animation) 
Casey Smith (Program Chair, Liberal Arts) 
Melissa Fitzgerald (Program Chair, Illustration) 

<– Userway –>