Nearly 20 years after losing its accreditation, HBCU Morris Brown College is making historical strides to get it back.

Today, the university announced that its application for accreditation was approved by the federally recognized Transnational Association of Christian Colleges and Schools (TRACS), putting it back on track to earn its official status back.

According to Atlanta Voice, TRACS representatives plan to visit the campus in January of 2021 for their final evaluation ahead of candidacy consideration in April 2021.

If Morris Brown College is awarded its accreditation once again, it will become the first HBCU to do so.

“This is history in the making,” said Morris Brown President Kevin James to Fox 5 Atlanta. “Morris Brown intends to become the first HBCU to earn its accreditation back twenty years after losing it. When Morris Brown achieves candidacy status, hopefully by April 2021, it will give the college all the rights of a fully accredited college, which allows students to receive federal financial aid. Additionally, student degrees will be recognized by other schools and/or employers.”

This is a huge first step for the the institution since having its accreditation revoked by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools (SACSCOC) back in 2002 for debt and financial mismanagement, Atlanta Voice reports.

Atlanta Voice also shares that alongside Morris Brown’s consideration, TRACS has also accredited many other colleges and authorized several historically Black colleges — including Bennett College, Clinton College, Paine College, Paul Quinn College, Shorter College, and Virginia University of Lynchburg.

Bishop Reginald T. Jackson — Chairman of the Board of Trustees and Bishop of the 6th Episcopal District of the African Methodist Episcopal Church — shared his excitement of the news with Atlanta Voice saying:

“I am excited about the future of Morris Brown College under Dr. James’ leadership. Morris Brown has made tremendous progress within the last twenty months. The funds raised at this year’s homecoming represents the largest homecoming fundraiser in the past twenty years. The state’s 2019-2020 and 2020-2021 approval Georgia Nonpublic Postsecondary Education Commission and now accreditation application approval with TRACS are clear signs that Morris Brown College is headed in the right direction and gaining momentum for its future.”

Atlanta Voice reports that just a few weeks ago, Morris Brown was able to successfully raise over $550,000 during its 2020 virtual homecoming.

According to President James, fundraising has been a key part of the college’s revamped plans.

“The institution now has national visibility and resurgence,” he said. “I am also excited about the revitalization of the institution’s academic programs and student services, including new programs such as Esports Performance, Global Management and Applied Leadership, and Hospitality Management. Morris Brown can now compete again, and great things are in store for MBC.”