At its July meeting, the Commission on Accreditation for Respiratory Care (CoARC) voted to reaffirm continuing accreditation through 2029 to the MVCC Respiratory Care Program Associate in Applied Science (AAS) degree program.

In the spring, CoARC conducted a comprehensive evaluation of MVCC’s Respiratory Care program, including an on-site review, and regularly monitors the program’s compliance with established outcomes assessment thresholds through the Annual Report of Current Status submitted by the program, as well as other documentation. CoARC commended the College on the quality of the accreditation review conducted by the site team, which recognized the program’s compliance with the nationally established accreditation standards. The program was granted continued accreditation of 10 years until its next comprehensive evaluation, the longest time that is awarded for this type of accreditation.

Also this summer, MVCC’s Respiratory Care program received the Distinguished Registered Respiratory Therapist Credentialing Success Award from CoARC. This award was presented during the American Association for Respiratory Care (AARC) Summer Forum awards ceremony on July 21 in Fort Lauderdale, Fla. The award is given as part of CoARC’s efforts to value the Registered Respiratory Therapist credential as a standard of professional achievement. When selecting programs for the recognition, the CoARC Board used objective criteria based on key accreditation metrics documented in the 2017 Annual Report of Current Status. Receiving this award validates the work of the faculty and clinical instructors in presenting an exceptional program.

MVCC’s Respiratory Care program was developed in 1974 as a one-year certificate in response to an area-wide need for trained respiratory therapy technicians. This coincided with one of the objectives of a comprehensive community college put forth in 1964 by the New York State Board of Regents: to provide “the education necessary for an emerging group of semi-professional occupations.” The development of educational programs in response to a community need was (and still is) consistent with the vision and strategic plan of MVCC.

In the early 1990s, the need for an AAS degree respiratory therapist program became apparent due to changes in the health care industry and the planned requirement for an AAS degree for entry-level respiratory care practice. In 1995, an application for program expansion to an AAS degree was submitted to the State University of New York Department of Education. Approval was granted for expansion of the program in 1996, but because of changes in personnel and a desire to recruit students, the degree option began in 1997 as a 1+1 design. The curriculum was redesigned into a two-year AAS degree and launched in 2002, providing Advanced Cardiac Life Support, Pediatric Advanced Life Support, and Neonatal Resuscitation Protocol certifications to students without additional cost, utilizing specialty clinical rotations involving preceptors, adding a physician preceptorship, and placing the concentrated summer clinical at the end of the curriculum as a capstone experience to assist with the transition from student to practicing therapist.

Mohawk Valley Community College, established in 1946, is New York State’s first community college with a mission to provide accessible, high-quality educational opportunities for everyone. As the community’s college, MVCC is committed to student success through partnerships, transfer and career pathways, and personal enrichment. With campuses in Utica and Rome, MVCC is the region’s primary provider of college education, offering 90 degree and certificate options for its enrollment of 6,000 full- and part-time students. MVCC also serves an additional 6,000 people through its corporate and community education programs, and its campuses welcome more than 50,000 people annually for community events.

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