Mission, Vision & Values

Founded in 1770, the College of Charleston is a public university grounded in the principles of the liberal arts and committed to developing ethically centered, intellectually versatile and globally fluent citizens who create innovative solutions to social, economic and environmental challenges.

The Mission Statement (also called the Statement of Purpose) has been approved or revised by the State College Board of Trustees or the College of Charleston Board of Trustees on January 16, 1974; March 12, 1986; January 16, 1991; February 15, 1994; July 13, 2006; July 23, 2014; August 25, 2014; and May 7, 2020.


The College of Charleston will be a transformative national university redefining liberal arts education through innovation.

Core Values

The College of Charleston's Core Purpose is to pursue and share knowledge through study, inquiry and creation in order to empower the individual and enrich society.
  • Integrity

    We take accountability for our actions and adhere to the highest ethical standards in all our professional obligations and personal responsibilities. We demonstrate respect for self, others and place.

  • Academic Excellence

    We are committed to a dynamic intellectual community, high academic standards, strong academic programs, exceptional teacher-scholars, engaged students and lifelong learners.

  • Liberal Arts Education

    We encourage intellectual curiosity and foster each student’s ability to think creatively and analyze, synthesize, apply and communicate knowledge from many sources.

  • Diversity, Equity & Inclusion

    We create and nurture a diverse and inclusive community demonstrated through our thoughts, words and actions. We value and respect the unique perspectives, backgrounds and experiences every individual has to offer.

  • Student Centeredness

    We are devoted to nurturing thriving scholar-citizens through the intellectual, ethical and social development of each individual student.

  • Innovation

    We act with an entrepreneurial spirit to imagine and implement creative, bold and sustainable solutions in our pursuit of excellence and continuous improvement.

  • Public Mission

    We demonstrate social responsibility in meeting the educational and professional needs of our community, our state, our nation and the world.