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FAIRMOUNT COLLEGE OF LIBERAL ARTS AND SCIENCES

Fairmount College and Department Mission Statements

The mission of Fairmount College of Liberal Arts and Sciences is to cultivate intellectual curiosity and foster contemplation of the human experience and the natural world. Faculty members are dedicated to creating, expanding, applying, and preserving knowledge, and to introducing students to the scholarship, theories, methods, and perspectives of their diverse disciplines. A liberal arts and sciences education develops transferable analytical skillsthe capacity to gather and interpret information, think critically, and communicate effectively and stimulates a lifelong love of learning that enriches graduates and their communities.

Mission statements for each of the undergraduate degree programs, the Hugo Wall School, two centers, and the general studies program follow.

Anthropology Geology Philosophy
Biological Sciences History Physics
Chemistry Hugo Wall School of Urban and Public Affairs Political Science
Criminal Justice Intensive English Language Center Psychology
Elliott School of Communication LAS Advising Center Social Work
English Mathematics and Statistics Sociology
General Studies Modern and Classical Languages and Literatures Women's Studies and Religion

Anthropology
The mission of the anthropology department's undergraduate program is to offer programs and facilities at a nationally competitive level consistent with the needs of the local communities in southcentral Kansas while 1) providing a comprehensive curriculum for undergraduate students and an opportunity for non-majors to learn about the history and diversity of the human experience; 2) contributing to a liberal education in the arts and sciences of all students by providing exposure to diverse cultural experiences, developing critical thinking skills and teaching an understanding of the complexity of human diversity; 3) promoting scholarly and applied research by the faculty and students; 4) providing assistance and public service to lawenforcement, medical, education, cultural resource management, and multicultural organizations in the local and regional communities.

Biological Sciences
The department of biological sciences contributes to the university mission by providing high-quality teaching for both undergraduate and graduate students and a scholarship source for the university and the community. This contribution is strongly enhanced by the ongoing presence of scientific research conducted by our faculty.

Chemistry
The chemistry department is committed to provide a high-quality and well-rounded educational program equipping students with the core content and appropriate skills for successfully continuing studies and/or for careers related to the discipline.

Criminal Justice
The mission of the department of criminal justice at Wichita State University is to educate entry-level & in-service practitioners who work in a variety of settings. The educational program, through academic course work, requires each student to assimilate knowledge, acquire skills, and develop professional judgment and behaviors appropriate for wise & ethical practice. Program faculty have the responsibility to graduate fully competent, skilled practitioners while remaining sensitive and responsive to the educational needs of each student.

Elliott School of Communication
The mission of the Elliott School of Communication is to develop well-rounded communication professionals with essential skillsincluding an ability to think critically, plan strategically, and communicate effectively in multiple communication contexts. The mission of this comprehensive and integrated degree program is rooted in the fundamental communication artswriting, speaking, and visual communicationand the new convergence of communication forms, channels and technologies that characterize the digital age in which we live.

English
The English department offers a broad and flexible program of courses that are central to a liberal arts education while offering students the opportunity for personal enrichment and a variety of career possibilities. The department offers degree programs in creative writing, literature, and English teaching, as well as a range of courses in linguistics. Students who combine an English major with substantial work in other disciplines will find the knowledge and communication skills acquired in their work in English a valuable asset as they seek entrance into a wide range of fields that include communications, education, government, law, and business.

General Studies
The mission of the Bachelor of General Studies degree is to serve the needs of students who have specific learning and employment outcomes for their undergraduate degree. The BGS mission encourages students to combine disciplines in such a way that their education enhances their future lives. Within this mission, we find students who are moving toward professional education in medicine and law as well as students who plan to create a major that addresses both their personal and employment interests. Hence, the mission of the BGS degree is to meet the needs of a diverse set of students who enroll at an urban institution with a mission to serve the best pedagogical interests of traditional and non-traditional populations. The popularity of the BGS degree, as an option for WSU students, attests to its value and success.

Geology
The department of geology program seeks to prepare students with the scientific knowledge to proceed to geologic careers in industry, government, or to be admitted to a geology graduate program. Students are prepared for certification/registration on a state or national level where appropriate. Students are prepared with the background and skills to enable them to continue to learn, develop and adapt to changing conditions throughout their careers.

History
The purpose of the department of history at Wichita State University is to illuminate the forces that have shaped our world and to provide a historical perspective for the future. To accomplish those goals, the department offers a flexible program of study. While students may focus on a specific area of concentration, the program introduces them to a variety of classes that assures them a foundation for an integrated liberal education. Combined with courses in other disciplines, the study of history prepares students for entrance into a wide variety of career opportunities, including business, government, law, journalism, teaching, communications, public service, and the military.

Hugo Wall School of Urban and Public Affairs
The Hugo Wall School of Urban and Public Affairs is committed to enhancing the quality of public life through high-quality graduate instruction, excellence in applied research, and responsive community service. This focus results now only in an excellent graduate education for students, but also allows a special connection with the community's needs through research and service. By integrating teaching, research, and service, the school makes a distinctive contribution to Wichita State University's long standing commitment of service to Wichita, the surrounding communities, and the region.

Intensive English Language Center
The mission of the Intensive English Language Center directly addresses the goal of helping the students achieve the required English proficiency for entrance to the University. In addition, we have international students as well as permanent residents who are not university bound, but rather want to improve their knowledge of and ability in English for personal or professional reasons. Classes taken in our program for this purpose help them improve their respective life skills.

Liberal Arts and Sciences Advising Center
The mission of LASAC is to serve all new, transfer, returning and continuing students. The LASAC is committed to providing accurate, consistent and detailed information on general education, academic and pre-professional program requirements to students, faculty, and staff in all units of Wichita State University and Community Colleges throughout the State of Kansas. The LASAC also helps students identify other university resources and provides academic problem solving and support services. The LASAC helps students define their academic interests, develop efficient degree plans in collaboration with departmental undergraduate coordinators, and accomplish their academic goals.

Mathematics and Statistics
The mission of the undergraduate program in mathematics and statistics is to provide a broadly based program in undergraduate level mathematics and statistics which will prepare students either for graduate study in mathematics and statistics; or for mathematics-statistics related employment in academic, industrial or governmental positions.

Modern and Classical Languages and Literatures
The BA in Modern and Classical Languages and Literatures together with the MA in Spanish form an integral component of the stated teaching, research, and service missions of Wichita State University. MCLL embraces at once a humanistic, general education mission and a technical/professional, applied mission. Our programs enable students to understand the nature and structure of foreign languages, their interplay with other humanities disciplines, and the significance of works of foreign literature. We also equip learners with tools of communication and provide specialized vocabulary and translation strategies for types of language frequently encountered on the job in non-English speaking countries.

An essential part of our institutional mission is to support a clearly articulated requirement for degree-bound students in liberal arts to achieve basic intermediate proficiency in at least one language other than their native tongue, as a necessary complement to courses in other areas of liberal arts or in conjunction with technical or professional fields such as business, aerospace, criminal justice or pre-law.

Through published research whose quality and diversity enhance the fulfillment of our teaching mission, MCLL faculty likewise advance the institutional goal of making original contributions to knowledge and human understanding.

Our department also devotes considerable energy to public and community service activities, promoting cultural exchange and alliances between Wichita and sister cities Orléans (France), Cancun and Tlalnepantla (Mexico), and Kaifeng (China). Diplomatic and academic ties interconnect through student exchange opportunities including scholarships benefiting WSU students.

In addition to the above, programs in Puebla (Mexico) and Strasbourg (France), together with MCLL’s regular offerings in Chinese, Classics, French, German, Italian, Japanese, Linguistics, Russian, Spanish, and Teacher Education, provide far-reaching opportunities for foreign language students at Wichita State.

Philosophy
In terms of teaching, the philosophy department has a threefold mission: (1) to offer a traditional philosophy major to serve the needs of students seeking admission to graduate school or law school, as well as students desiring a classical liberal arts education; (2) to offer a wide array of general education courses in support of the general education program; and (3) to offer specific courses to satisfy requirements for other programs. The department also is committed to contributing to scholarship through the production of scholarly books, articles, and professional presentations. The department also regards service activities as part of its mission and is heavily involved in departmental, college, university, community, and professional service.

Physics
The mission of Wichita State University is not merely that of a trade school, but to provide comprehensive education. A good university education teaches students to think critically, and to use the wisdom of the past to understand the present and to develop a vision for the future. Physics is an essential part of this goal. Physics can be defined as the attempt to understand the behavior of matter and energy in terms of a few general laws or principles. Physicists try to understand the cosmos, all the way from stars and galaxies down to the elementary particles that make up nuclei and atoms. The laws of physics underlie the electronic intricacies of computers as well as the biological complexities of the human brain. Understanding the cosmos and the human brain are perhaps the boldest goals of 21st century physics, but of course there are also more down-to-earth problems being tackled by physicists today. In fact, the creative processes used in physicsthe logic, the discipline, the approach to analyzing the single tree without being overwhelmed by the forestalso have important applications in many other areas if not in all.

Political Science
The department of political science supports both the mission of the University and the mission of Fairmount College of Liberal Arts and Sciences through teaching, research, and service in order to help students become more effective citizens in acquiring an understanding of local, national, and global matters. The purpose of the Department of Political Science is to stimulate intellectual curiosity about the discipline of political science and to encourage students to develop critical and analytical skills about different aspects of the political world. Specifically, the Political Science Department builds on a core curriculum that is determined by the University and Fairmount College of Liberal Arts and Sciences. The department offers a broad program of study, which introduces students to the major areas of the discipline with courses in American politics, comparative politics, international politics, and political theory. One goal is to help students develop an understanding of the forces shaping the political world, both domestically and internationally, and to develop skills in interpreting past, present, and future political events. In addition, the study of political science prepares students for further study and for entry into a variety of career opportunities such as law, government, journalism, teaching, business, public service, theology, and the military.

Psychology
The Wichita State University undergraduate program in psychology is designed to provide a solid research orientation in experimental and quasi-experimental design and analysis with balanced attention to basic psychological processes (learning, cognition, perception, motivation, emotion, consciousness, physiology, etc.); social/cultural dimensions (social, developmental, personality, developmental, etc.); and applied issues and perspectives (clinical, community, substance abuse, testing & measurement, etc.)

Social Work
The mission of the Baccalaureate Social Work Program at Wichita State University is to prepare students for competent and effective professional entry-level social work practice within a generalist model.  The BSW program is grounded in the history of the profession and dedicated to social work values of diversity, ethics and challenging oppression. Students will be prepared to apply evidence-based knowledge and skills to multiple systems to advance human rights and economic, political and social justice. Themes of the program are aimed at:

  • Generalist Practice

  • Professional Identity

  • Values & Ethics

  • Diversity

Sociology
The department of sociology has as its mission the development of understanding and skills among our students while serving the needs of our faculty and institution. As a science, sociology is particularly interested in the development of research skills that can be translated into employment opportunities for our BA and MA students. Specifically, this means our students must be aware of the theoretical, methodological, and statistical dimensions of the research enterprise. Sociology as a discipline which identifies and studies the effects of structural issues in society, i.e. race/ethnicity, economic inequality, age, gender, etc., and works to develop insights in our students about the effects of these structures on their personal lives and in their communities. Finally, the department of sociology intends that our students be employable with the BA and MA degrees and use University and community resources to make the transitions to work more successful.

Womens Studies and Religion
The Center for Womens Studies and Religion is committed to the mission of Wichita State University to provide quality teaching, scholarship, and public service to the states largest metropolitan community. By providing educational opportunities and mentoring to students from all walks of life, members of both the Womens Studies and Religion faculty (units merged in1989) have been nominated for awards for teaching excellence. The breadth and depth of interdisciplinary courses offered at the Center encompass Biblical studies from historical, literary, social-scientific, and theological perspectives, women in world religions, gender related social issues, womens professional and domestic accomplishments as well as womens historical experiences in the local, national, and international arenas.