Vision, Mission and Values
Missouri Western will be the premier open access regional university, known for transforming the lives of our students and the communities we serve Missouri.
Western State University is a student-centered learning community preparing individuals for lives of excellence through applied learning.
In fulfilling our mission and pursuing our vision, we the people of Missouri Western State University hold in common these values:
We share the common purpose of serving students, one another and the people of the region.
We are committed to the quality of our programs, our students, and our partnership with the people of the region.
We are enthusiastic about learning and confident that we can make a difference in the lives of students through their learning.
We promote the free exchange of ideas that makes education liberating and democracy unique.
We act as individuals and as a campus community with respect for diversity and for the best in human potential.
We seek the challenge and adventure of shaping the future with an increasingly global perspective.
In August of 2005, Missouri Western achieved university status and was designated as having a statewide mission in applied learning. Applied learning refers to student learning that occurs in nontraditional contexts on or off the university campus, involves "hands-on learning," and can be either credit-bearing or noncredit bearing. Over 98% of Missouri Western students experience a credit-bearing applied learning course during their time at Missouri Western, and some programs require that all students complete such an experience.
Missouri Western's applied learning experiences align closely with the Missouri Department of Higher Education's high impact educational experiences and include learning communities, collaborative assignments and projects, student/faculty research, service learning, study abroad, internships/practica/student teaching and focused field experiences. The common thread among all of these experiences is that they take place outside of the typical classroom setting. Even undergraduate research, which may occur in a laboratory setting, involves presenting research findings in a conference-type setting. Internships and practica typically take place off campus. Service-learning integrates academic content with community need in ways that enhance both student learning and community outcomes. Study abroad experiences broaden our students' perspectives to provide a richer context for the academic knowledge they are acquiring. Each form of applied learning involves moving beyond the classroom walls to apply and understand content in context.
Noncredit bearing applied learning occurs through portions of the co-curriculum, and includes a wide variety of cultural events. Participation in the co-curriculum is not required, but encouraged, for all students.