The mission statements I found are from
Virginia Tech: http://www.president.vt.edu/mission_vision/mission.html
Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University (Virginia Tech) is a public land-grant university serving the Commonwealth of Virginia, the nation, and the world community. The discovery and dissemination of new knowledge are central to its mission. Through its focus on teaching and learning, research and discovery, and outreach and engagement, the university creates, conveys, and applies knowledge to expand personal growth and opportunity, advance social and community development, foster economic competitiveness, and improve the quality of life. 2001 Mission Statement adapted in 2006, by the Board of Visitors
Bogazici University: http://www.boun.edu.tr/en-US/Content/About_BU/Vision_Mission.aspx
The mission of our university is:
1. Educating individuals who endorse our institutional values, who respect ethical standards, who are environmentally conscious, who can think critically and who, with their academic and cultural formation and self confidence, are versatile, creative and capable of being successfully employed in academic institutions and in public or private sectors.
2. Generating universal knowledge and contributing to critical thinking, science and technology while serving humanity
3. Expanding the scientific horizons in Turkey and contributing to the insitutionalization of science, art and culture in our society.
The mission statements from Virginia Tech (Blacksburg, VA) and Bogazici University (Istanbul, Turkey) seem to reflect both universal and context specific value systems.
Both mission statements highlight the themes of serving (the region, nation, and humanity), generating new knowledge, through creativity, and applying the knowledge to personal and societal world. Both statements seem to clearly state that universities are where the knowledge is constantly practiced, generated, and re-generated.
The mission statements slightly differ, as a reflection of their contextual and historical traditions. VT is basically a technical-oriented landgrant university, whereas BU is more likely to be a liberal arts-management based university. While BU includes “art” in its statement, VT does not have such a claim.
Along these lines, BU highlights the essentially of critical thinking in its mission statement, while VT does not overtly state the role of critical thinking. Also, may be along with the role of slightly-more collectivist culture of Turkey, BU seem to highlight “serving the humanity” piece as an ultimate goal. Whereas, in VT’s mission statement, the humanity’s welfare is conceptualized as sth to be reached through the gradual development of the people.