Comparing Mission Statements from Two Colombian Universities

The objective of this post is to contrast the mission statement of two Colombian universities. The first statement is from the largest public university (funded by the central government), Universidad Nacional de Colombia and second is from the largest private university, Universidad de los Andes.

Universidad Nacional’s mission statement can be found in Spanish at http://unal.edu.co/la-universidad/mision-y-vision/ You can read my translation to english below.

“As the University of the nation, we promote access with equity to the Colombian educational system, provides the largest number of academic programs, forms competent and socially responsible professionals. Contributes to the elaboration and resignification of the nation’s project, studies and enriches the national cultural, natural, and environmental patrimony of the country. As such, it provides consultations in the scientific, technologic, cultural, and artistic fields with both academic and research autonomy.”

Universidad de Los Andes’ mission statement can be found at https://www.uniandes.edu.co/component/content/article/656-about-uniandes You can read it below.

“Universidad de los Andes is an autonomous, independent, and innovative institution that fosters pluralism, tolerance, and respect for ideas. It aims for academic excellence while providing rigorous critical and ethical character development, in order to enhance in all students an awareness of their social and citizenship responsibilities, as well as a firm commitment to the society. The university’s student body, in an environment of interdisciplinary and flexible integral character development, becomes the chief agent of the educational process. A highly skilled, knowledgeable, and prestigious faculty facilitates the development of an outstanding academic and professional life project that supports research, contributes to the development of the country, and transcends its geographical boundaries.”

These two mission statements have many similarities as they mention the social role of the institutions and briefly describe their academic activities. However, Universidad Nacional appear to have a heavier social component. It seems like this university cooperates with the government in achieving social goals to promote equity in education, educating socially conscious professionals and aiding in the resignification process of the nation.

On the other hand I perceived multiple differences in these statements. For instance, Universidad Nacional makes emphasis in their interest in cultural aspects, Universidad de Los Andes doesn’t A clear divergence between these two statement is that Universidad de los Andes wants to have an impact inside the country as well as beyond geographical boundaries, however, Universidad Nacional only mentions functions and objectives tied to the nation. Part of this disparity could be the source of funding from these two institutions, the first is a private university and the second obtains most of it;s funding from governmental sources.mention this component in their mission.

I think that the statement by Universidad de los Andes has a more “modern” approach. It mentions pluralism and multidisciplinary, which are crucial components of modern educational models.

In summary I found that these two statements have great similarities as they both state their activities and objectives, but clear differences emerge in what aspects of society they want impact.

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