On Mission: Mission Statements

Task: find two mission statements, compare and contrast. Go!
Of course, my first thought was to look up my very own alma mater, the University of Georgia. UGA (Go Dawgs!) is a land-grant (apparently sea-grant as well) public university located in Athens, Georgia. Side note: my dad’s family is from there- very exciting. I’m not going to post the entire mission statement because, bless their heart, it’s long.

The most interesting tidbits I pulled from the essay were the following points:

  • motto, “to teach, to serve, and to inquire into the nature of things,” reflects the University’s integral and unique role in the conservation and enhancement of the state’s and nation’s intellectual, cultural, and environmental heritage
  • statewide responsibility and commitment to excellence and academic achievements
  • a commitment to excellence in public service, economic development, and technical assistance activities designed to address the strategic needs of the state of Georgia along with a comprehensive offering of continuing education designed to meet the needs of Georgia’s citizens in life-long learning and professional education

The most important message I kept from their mission statement, other than the length, was how deeply the state of Georgia is embedded into the University. In case you haven’t had a chance to visit the glorious peach state that I call home, UGA is everywhere. I’m not exaggerating. To me it seems that the mission statement is certainly being lived out.

The mission statement also throws in some “about us” where there is some discussion about the colleges and types of degrees offered.

 

The second mission statement I researched was the University of Queensland in Brisbane, Australia. UQ is a public university (called a “uni” down under) Side note: I have zero family from here, but spent two summers living it up in the land of OZ as a teaching assistant.

As the mission statement is so succinct, I have pasted it below.

The University of Queensland positively influences society by engaging in the pursuit of excellence through the creation, preservation, transfer and application of knowledge. UQ helps shape the future by bringing together and developing leaders in their fields to inspire the next generation and to advance ideas that benefit the world. UQ strives for the personal and professional success of its students, staff and alumni.

This is much more of what I imagined a mission statement to be. It does not seem particularly specific, but it gets the message across: to learn and integrate ideas for the purpose of improving the world.

Aspects of the page, and not necessarily the mission statement, that stood out to me were the definitions of the mission, vision and values. It helps to guide the user as to the purpose of the site. I actually appreciated that part of it.

Both universities have a clear part of their statements devoted to the aspects of students expanding their knowledge and impacting the world around them. UGA’s is quite a bit more lengthy.

The “take home” message that I derive from both of these statements is that it is important to say what is needed with few words, but be specific. I feel that the UGA mission statement could only apply to UGA, while UQ’s statement really could be from any university.