The NCAA moved within a single step of accepting its first international member when the Division II Membership Committee conditionally approved Simon Fraser University of Burnaby, B.C., as a Division II active member.
The action was among several the Divisions II and III Membership Committees took during their recent meetings to approve active status for several schools that had completed those divisions’ provisional/reclassifying membership process.
Simon Fraser’s active status is contingent on NCAA Executive Committee approval of a modification to NCAA Constitution 3.02.3.1, which currently requires all NCAA members to be accredited by a U.S. regional accrediting agency. Simon Fraser has been accepted into candidacy by the Northwest Commission on Colleges and Universities, but the process will not be complete until 2017 at the earliest.
To address the situation, the Division II Presidents Council at its April meeting recommended that the Executive Committee modify the constitutional provision so that international members can be accepted as active members if the international institution is accredited by one of the six U.S. regional accrediting agencies, or the international institution is a candidate for accreditation with one of the six U.S. regional accrediting agencies and is in good standing with its country’s national, regional or provincial accreditation agency.
The Executive Committee will consider the issue at its Aug. 1 meeting. If it approves the modification, Simon Fraser would join the other six institutions as active Division II members beginning Sept. 1.
The Division II Membership Committee also approved six other institutions for active status, effective Sept. 1:
Meanwhile, the Division III Membership Committee approved active status for three schools that successfully completed all four years of the Division III provisional/reclassifying membership process. If approved by the Division III Management Council in July, the following will begin active status in Division III on Sept. 1:
In addition to the action regarding Simon Fraser, the Division II Membership Committee also took a preliminary step to consider membership applications from Mexican institutions. Two Mexican schools, the University of Nuevo Leon and Monterrey Tech, have expressed membership interest.
The arrangement to accept applications from Mexican institutions would have to be approved through a three-step process. First, the Division II Presidents Council would need to authorize expansion of the international-member pilot program (the same one that permitted Simon Fraser to become a member) to Mexican institutions from a Division II perspective by sponsoring a proposal to amend the constitution. The pilot currently applies only to Canadian schools.
Second, the Executive Committee would need to approve the expansion of the pilot from an Association-wide perspective at its August meeting. Finally, the Division II membership would need to approve legislation at the January 2013 Convention expanding the pilot to permit membership from Mexico.
The Membership Committee recommended that the expansion of the pilot, if approved, be effective immediately, which means that prospective members would be able to apply Feb. 1, 2013. Without the immediate effective date, the earliest such applications could be made would be Feb. 1, 2014, which would compress the time remaining in the pilot, which is to expire in 2018. The committee noted that institutions in Mexico must still complete the three-year membership process.