For this assignment, I chose to look at and think about mission statements from two diverse institutions of higher education, Roanoke College and University of Toledo College of Medicine and Life Sciences, both of which hold a great deal of meaning for me. Roanoke College, my alma mater, is the quintessential representation of a small liberal arts university. Not only did I graduate from this university, but it represents the kind of institution I picture myself joining as a faculty member one day. It is located in Salem, Virginia, not far from here, and has a student body of approximately 2,000. University of Toledo is located in northern Ohio, and I specifically looked at the mission statement for the College of Medicine and Life Sciences within University of Toledo because joining the faculty on a medical campus is another opportunity I’m considering.
In a way, the mission statement of Roanoke College stood out to me because of how much I can identify with its vision, mission, and purpose. Having graduated from this very institution, I can attest to how much this rings true for me personally, especially as a graduate of the Honors Program. Learning, service, and leadership were indeed the cornerstones of my time spent there, and the perspective of the student as a multi-faceted community member with an obligation to learn, serve, and lead were very evident to me. The language of this mission statement is very student-centric, with a focus on individual growth.
This focus can be contrasted against that which shone through in the University of Toledo College of Medicine and Life Sciences mission statement. While education and research appear to be critical components of the student experience here, there is an added focus on clinical care. The student in this case is viewed (appropriately, considering that this is a medical college) as a practitioner, more so than a community member. These institutions serve very different demographics with very different purposes and outcomes in mind, contributing to a clear distinction in their overall mission statements. But it was a bit shocking to see that the student and their learning experience were not really the primary focus of the University of higher education serving medical students. After all, they are still learners.
Roanoke College – Mission Statement
Roanoke College is committed to being a leading national liberal arts college, a model of experiential learning, and a community committed to open discourse and civil debate as ways of learning and as preparation for service in the world.
Roanoke College develops students as whole persons and prepares them for responsible lives of learning, service, and leadership by promoting their intellectual, ethical, spiritual and personal growth.
Roanoke College pursues its mission through an innovative curriculum that combines a core program in the liberal arts, major fields of study in the natural sciences, the social sciences, and the humanities and fine arts, along with career-oriented, specialized programs of study. Founded by Lutherans in 1842, Roanoke College welcomes and reflects a variety of religious traditions. The College honors its Christian heritage and its partnership with the Lutheran church by nurturing a dialogue between faith and reason. In keeping with its history and mission, the College strives to be a diverse community, nationally and internationally. Central to achieving the purposes of the College is a strong commitment to liberal education and its vision of human freedom leading to service within the human community. The College’s learning goals, therefore, focus upon developing both a student’s confident sense of freedom in the world and a sense of purpose in using that freedom. Through these goals the College strives to produce resourceful, informed, and responsible citizens prepared for productive careers and for leadership in community.
University of Toledo College of Medicine and Life Sciences – Mission Statement
The University of Toledo College of Medicine and Life Sciences, with its partner ProMedica, is nationally recognized for education and focused research, and regionally distinguished for comprehensive clinical care.
The mission of The University of Toledo College of Medicine and Life Sciences is to improve health in the communities and region we serve. We do this by educating excellent clinicians and scientists, by providing patient centered and high-quality care and by producing nationally recognized research in focused area.
Both statements above reflect the College’s core values of professionalism, service, diversity, collaboration and discovery.