By the time I graduated from Shiraz University, Iran with my undergraduate degree, I was admitted into two US universities: University of Kentucky and University of Tennessee. I picked university of Kentucky and graduated with my Master of Science in 2010. University of Kentucky and University of Tennessee are both public universities established in 1865 and 1794, respectively. The mission statements for both universities are presented here:
“University of Kentucky, Lexington: The University of Kentucky is a public, land grant university dedicated to improving people’s lives through excellence in education, research and creative work, service, and health care. As Kentucky’s flagship institution, the University plays a critical leadership role by promoting diversity, inclusion, economic development, and human well-being.”
“University of Tennessee, Knoxville: The University of Tennessee System, through its multiple campuses and institutes, serves the people of Tennessee and beyond through the discovery, communication and application of knowledge. The System is committed to providing undergraduate, graduate and professional education programs in a diverse learning environment that prepares students to be leaders in a global society. The UT System’s delivery of education, discovery, outreach and public service contributes to the economic, social and environmental well-being of all Tennesseans.”
Although both mission statements and, in general, all mission statements yield obvious similarities, there are some subtle differences that can have huge effects on new potential students especially one who has no other sources to know the university and its atmosphere.
In the case of comparison between University of Kentucky and University of Tennessee mission statements, although both emphasis on well-being and welfare of people, University of Kentucky statement has more general tone that catches my eyes as an international student. Furthermore, there are some choices of words, which made me lean more toward University of Kentucky, e.g. “creative work” and “health care”. “Creative work” ,I believe, is the key to all successes that an accredit university is looking for and knowing that a university put effort and energy into discovering and nurturing creativity brings up the best in students. Putting emphasis on “health care” also gives new students peace of mind.