UW-La Crosse's institutional priorities are guided by the UWL Select Mission, Vision, and Values statements, adopted by the UWL Joint Planning & Budget Committee in March 2015. As part of the University of Wisconsin System, UWL is also guided by the UW System Mission Statement and the Core Mission of the University Cluster Institutions, which applies to all the comprehensive universities in the UW System. At the core of all the mission statements is "The Wisconsin Idea," the principle that the knowledge of the university should be extended to the entire state.
The University of Wisconsin - La Crosse: Mission, Vision, and Values
Adopted by the UWL Joint Planning & Budget Committee, March 2015
The University of Wisconsin-La Crosse provides a challenging, dynamic, and diverse learning environment in which the entire university community is fully engaged in supporting student success. Grounded in the liberal arts, UWL fosters curiosity and life-long learning through collaboration, innovation, and the discovery and dissemination of new knowledge. Acknowledging and respecting the contributions of all, UWL is a regional academic and cultural center that prepares students to take their place in a constantly changing world community. The university offers undergraduate programs and degrees in the arts and humanities, health and sciences, education, and business administration. The university offers graduate programs related to areas of emphasis and strength within the institution, including business administration, education, health, the sciences, and the social sciences.
The University of Wisconsin-La Crosse aims to foster within each student the curiosity, creativity, and tenacity necessary to solve the regional, national, and international challenges of the 21 st century. The university's official motto mens corpusque ("mind and body") will continue to guide our direction as a student-centered university committed to a quality education for the whole person. As such, it will continue to provide opportunities both inside and outside the classroom for the development of sound mental, emotional, and ethical skills, as well as general well-being. Our students, faculty, and staff will experience the world through constantly evolving technologies and cultures. Thus, the skills of effective communication, critical thought, leadership, and an appreciation for diversity must be the hallmarks of a UWL education.
Fassett Cotton, our institution's first leader, serving from 1909-1924, conceived the original University of Wisconsin-La Crosse educational philosophy of the total development of the individual. Later, history professor and Dean of the College of Arts, Letters, and Sciences, William M. Laux (1922-1967), suggested the symbols of our official university seal along with the accompanying Latin phrase, mens corpusque ("mind and body"), to exemplify our collective commitment to a high quality education for the whole person. The University of Wisconsin-La Crosse values:
- The mens corpusque educational philosophy that recognizes each student as a whole person and aspires to enhance both mind and body through the noble search for knowledge, truth, and meaning central to a wide range of high quality learning experiences and scholarly pursuits.
- Diversity, equity, and the inclusion and engagement of all people in a safe campus climate that embraces and respects the innumerable different perspectives found within an increasingly integrated and culturally diverse global community.
- A high quality of life and work balance, incorporating best practices for shared governance and the acquisition and efficient management of resources, equitable compensation, general wellness, and social, environmental, and economic sustainability.
- Civic engagement and a renewed commitment to the Wisconsin Idea, in which our socially responsible campus serves as a resource for our increasingly intertwined local, state, and global communities, collaborating and sharing resources and expertise to improve the human condition.
The University of Wisconsin System Mission
The mission of the System is to develop human resources, to discover and disseminate knowledge, to extend knowledge and its application beyond the boundaries of its campuses, and to serve and stimulate society by developing in students heightened intellectual, cultural, and humane sensitivities; scientific, professional, and technological expertise; and a sense of value and purpose. Inherent in this mission are methods of instruction, research, extended education, and public service designed to educate people and improve the human condition. Basic to every purpose of the System is the search for truth.
Core Mission of the University Cluster Institutions
- Offer associate and baccalaureate degree level and selected graduate programs within the context of its approved mission statement.
- Offer an environment that emphasizes teaching excellence and meets the educational and personal needs of students through effective teaching, academic advising, counseling, and university-sponsored cultural, recreational, and extracurricular programs.
- Offer a core of liberal studies that supports university degrees in the arts, letters, and sciences, as well as specialized professional/technical degrees at the associate and baccalaureate level.
- Offer a program of pre-professional curricular offerings consistent with the university's mission.
- Expect scholarly activity, including research, scholarship, and creative endeavor, that supports its programs at the associate and baccalaureate degree level, its selected graduate programs, and its approved mission statement.
- Promote the integration of the extension function, assist the University of Wisconsin-Madison Extension in meeting its responsibility for statewide coordination, and encourage faculty and staff participation in outreach activity.
- Participate in inter-institutional relationships in order to maximize educational opportunity for the people of the state effectively and efficiently through the sharing of resources.
- Embrace and encourage student, staff, and faculty diversity in all areas and demonstrate a commitment to equity, diversity, and inclusion.
- Support activities designed to promote the economic development of the state.