Mission & Values

MCLA Mission and Values Statement (Adopted 2013)

Smiling student in classOur Mission

Massachusetts College of Liberal Arts (MCLA) is the Commonwealth's public liberal arts college and a campus of the Massachusetts state university system. MCLA promotes excellence in learning and teaching, innovative scholarship, intellectual creativity, public service, applied knowledge, and active and responsible citizenship. MCLA prepares its graduates to be practical problem solvers and engaged, resilient global citizens.

Our Values

Our mission guides the strategic goals that advance MCLA: Excellence in Teaching and Learning; Supportive and Inclusive Community; Responsive and Intentional Stewardship; and Public Purpose and Engagement. These goals reflect the interplay of the shared values that shape our commitment to students, faculty, staff, and our community:

Student working at computerAccess: We believe a high quality liberal arts education should be available and affordable to all who aspire to it and are prepared for its challenges. MCLA is committed to providing this opportunity.

Critical Thinking: Through MCLA's role as leader, convener, and partner, we cultivate critical thinking and analysis in our learning and teaching. We promote a spirit of informed and open-ended inquiry. Our community members demonstrate consideration, deliberation, and planning in addressing challenges and opportunities in our society.

Discovery and Understanding: We understand intellectual disciplines and specific courses of study interact dynamically in academic and co-curricular experiences. We believe in strengthening student, faculty, and community interaction through engaging coursework, shared research, and service.

Global Awareness: We know that a liberal arts education affords students an appreciation of the wider world, both as a subject of intellectual discovery and through engagement with our society. We work to create and sustain the breadth of curriculum, experiences, and opportunities that lead us all to understand our active roles as knowledgeable global citizens.

Students walking to classInclusive Community: MCLA is committed to creating a campus climate and culture of mutual respect that represents and honors diversity in our society. We celebrate this diversity and affirm the dignity and worth of all people. We intentionally integrate topics of social, cultural, and physical diversity in the curricular, co-curricular, and work life of our community. 

Innovation, Experimentation and Creativity: We promote creativity and inquiry, and the role of a liberal arts institution to provide students with the freedom and means to explore ideas and take intellectual and creative risks.

Leadership: We believe that leadership is a shared responsibility, and encourage all members of the MCLA community to develop their affinity for leadership through formal coursework, professional development, co-curricular training, and practical application. We cultivate leadership opportunities and development programs to further these goals.

Instructor demonstrating camera for studentLifelong Learning: We empower learners to develop habits of learning that have integrity and engender respect for tradition. We deploy 21st century tools for learning in our academic and co-curricular programs that prepare students to be informed, engaged, and capable learners.

Practicality and Application: We believe that the disciplines of arts, sciences, and professional studies empower individuals with broad knowledge and transferable skills, and a strong sense of values and ethics. In its programs and initiatives MCLA forges the connection among academic study, experiential learning, civic engagement, and future success.

Stewardship: We manage our resources responsibly and sustainably, and offer a variety of educational, cultural, and recreational experiences for the campus and local communities. We provide unique resources for the greater Berkshire region. We encourage a spirit of service among students, faculty, staff, alumni, and trustees, and to serve as stewards of the future.