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President Scherrens honored with SACSCOC Leadership Award

December 20, 2022


ATLANTA — Dr. Maurice W. Scherrens, 22nd president of Newberry College, has received the James T. Rogers Distinguished Leadership Award from the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges. The award is the accreditation commission’s highest honor, presented annually “to an individual who has given exemplary service to SACSCOC.”


“Dr. Scherrens has been an advocate for quality in higher education for many years,” said Dr. Belle Wheelan, president of SACSCOC. “Since we first met while both employed in northern Virginia, I have known him to be a passionate educator who went out of his way to help students. His work with SACSCOC has been an extension of that passion as he has worked to assist institutions in ensuring they provide quality services and educational opportunities to all who enroll. We are truly thankful for Dr. Scherrens and are pleased to recognize his service.”


Scherrens’ history with the commission began in the early 1990s. He served on nearly 30 committee reaffirmation teams and reviewed the profiles of hundreds of colleges and universities, providing them the advice and counsel to meet the SACSCOC standards.


From 2016-21, he served on the SACSCOC Board of Trustees, in which he worked to ensure institutions meet the standards of excellence required for continued accreditation. During his time on the board, he was a member of the executive council, chair of the Audit and Finance Committee, and a member of the Committee on Compliance and Reports.


In August, Scherrens marked his 10th year as Newberry College’s president. His tenure has been marked by consistent growth in student enrollment, expansion of academic programs, an accreditation level change and the addition of the college’s first graduate program, and the most comprehensive capital campaign in school history. In 2021, Scherrens was elected chair of the South Carolina Independent Colleges and Universities’ Council of Presidents.


The award was named for James T. “Jim” Rogers, who led SACSCOC for two decades until his retirement in 2005. The commission accredits more than 800 colleges and universities in 11 U.S. states and in Latin America.

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