Our mission is our way of life.
The mission and goals of New College evolved out of intensive dialogue about higher education at the College's inception in the early 1960s. That dialogue involved administration, trustees and the charter faculty. Later, the faculty developed a unique, intellectually-rigorous curriculum designed to sustain the College's broad commitment to individualism, pluralism, flexibility, freedom and excellence.
As stated in the very first college catalog: “New College was named for a purpose. It is not, and never will be another college. It is, and will always remain, the new college, seeking new solutions to educational needs, accepting no dogma without test, striving to eliminate all barriers that inhibit the growth of ideas.”
More than fifty years later, New College’s mission remains essentially unchanged.
New College offers a liberal arts education of the highest quality in the context of a small, residential public honors college with a distinctive academic program which develops the student's intellectual and personal potential as fully as possible; encourages the discovery of new knowledge and values while providing opportunities to acquire established knowledge and values; and fosters the individual's effective relationship with society.
In 2008, the College’s Board of Directors approved an Academic Master Plan that is firmly rooted in the College’s mission and reaffirms the distinctive, innovative academic features developed by our founders over 50 years ago. More recently, we identified four core values that sum up what New College is all about: an intellectually rigorous curriculum; an innovative academic program; a collaborative learning environment; and a place to chart one’s one course.