The Mission of Warren Wilson College

Students in Class

The mission of Warren Wilson College is to provide a distinctive undergraduate and graduate liberal arts education. Our undergraduate education combines academics, work, and service in a learning community committed to environmental responsibility, cross-cultural understanding, and the common good.

Core Values

All proceedings, programs, and initiatives of the College are grounded in a commitment to the following core values:

The Triad: Academics, work, and service

Community: Civic engagement and participatory governance
Liberal Arts: Experiential and innovative education
Sustainability: Environmental responsibility, social and economic justice
Diversity: Inclusivity, international and cross-cultural understanding
Wellness: Personal growth and well-being

Enduring Institutional Objectives

Drawing from its core values, the College accomplishes its mission through an enduring commitment to the following objectives:

  1. To practice an integrated Triad of academic study, productive work, and meaningful service
  2. To prepare students for service, leadership, and meaningful lifelong work and learning
  3. To offer an undergraduate educational program that
    A. enables students to think critically, obtain and evaluate information effectively, and communicate clearly;
    B. introduces students to a variety of ways that humans acquire and use knowledge;
    C. provides students with opportunities to develop a breadth of understanding and to make connections among areas critical to a liberal arts curriculum;
    D. requires that students demonstrate a depth of understanding through competence in one or more academic disciplines;
    E. leads students into considered reflection on the meaning and value of work and service to others;
    F. engages students in Triad activities that deepen understanding about the environmental, economic, and community bases of sustainability;
    G. guides students in examining their lives and articulating their beliefs and values;
    H. provides opportunities for personal, physical, moral, and spiritual development;
    I. imparts an awareness of the commonality of human problems while encouraging the development of civic engagement and a sense of social justice;
    J. offers educational opportunities for students to better appreciate the diversity of the world and to develop cross-cultural and international understanding.
  4. To offer select, innovative graduate programs grounded in the liberal arts tradition
  5. To promote environmental responsibility in students through education, campus operations, policy, and community outreach
  6. To create an educational community representing a broadly diverse world
  7. To nurture, through responsible and resourceful management policies, a small, residential community where students, faculty, staff , and governing board share close, mutually supportive, personal relationships and collaborate in College governance
  8. The strategic plan draws on the College’s Enduring Institutional Objectives and identifies those for specific initiatives during the strategic plan period, 2010-2015.


Warren Wilson College will lead the nation toward a new model for liberal arts education through the innovation of its Triad educational program, the quality of its academic engagement, the fulfillment of its sustainability principles, the depth of its commitment to diversity, the vitality of its community, and its nurturing of individual well-being.