DePaul University Division of Mission and Ministry > About > Mission Statement Review Process

Mission Statement Review Process


Since the establishment of the Mission Committee of the DePaul Board of Trustees in 2008, the committee has been charged with reviewing the university mission statement. Recently in 2016, they decided this would occur on a five-year cycle. This review process is occurring again during the 2020-2021 academic year.

Since the time the current mission statement was established in 1985-86, there have been only two revisions – one in 1991 and the other in 2016. For much of this time, then, the Board found the mission statement to be effective in articulating DePaul’s sense of mission. One common critique of the mission statement, however, has been its length. Some have longed for a shorter, more memorable and focused statement that many would describe as the best practice for institutional mission statements.

As the mission statement review process is initiated again this year, the Board of Trustees and university leadership have decided to undergo a more thorough and participatory review process and to strongly consider a revision of the current mission statement. The potential result of this process may be to revise the statement to be more concise and to reflect the needs, responsibilities and opportunities of DePaul’s Vincentian higher education in the current context and for the future.

The Division of Mission and Ministry has been charged with leading the process of gathering the necessary information, data and input from the university community to assist the Board of Trustees with this task.
A multi-step process is being implemented during this academic year, involving:

  1. A review of the history of DePaul’s mission statement and other related documents that describe the self-understanding of DePaul’s sense of purpose and vision and how it has evolved over the course of its history.
  2. The Seeds of the Mission Campaign to identify current-day examples of DePaul’s mission-in-practice across the university.
  3. Input from a survey of the Board of Trustees.
  4. A series of dialogue sessions with a wide and diverse range of the DePaul community of faculty, staff, students and alumni to invite their qualitative input on what is essential to DePaul’s mission, together with a corresponding survey for those unable to participate in these dialogue sessions.

The information, data, and input from these four steps will be collected by the end of the fall quarter. A synthesis of all data will be reflected in a summary report shared with the VP for Mission and Ministry by January 15th, 2021. This report will guide considerations of university leadership and the Board regarding the future of the mission statement, with the process completed by the Spring of 2021.

For ease of discussion you can download a copy of the university's mission statement with numbered paragraphs

Step 4 of the process described above recommends a series of dialogue sessions during the fall quarter with a broad range of faculty, staff, students and alumni to gather feedback about what they have come to experience and understand as essential to DePaul’s mission. The dialogues with the university community are intended to enable broad participation and input into the overall process.

These dialogues will invite participants first to engage in a critical review of the current mission statement, identifying elements deemed to be essential to mission of DePaul University as we understand it today, as well as those elements that may no longer serve such a vital purpose. Then, participants will be asked to identify key focal points or themes that may be important to consider for a DePaul mission statement as we look to the future. The dialogue sessions will gather this input from a wide, representative group of the DePaul community.

Because not all members of the university community may be able to participate in one of the dialogue sessions, a qualitative survey tool has also been developed to enable online participation. This survey tool will serve as a means for any follow up comments to be added after the fact by participants in the dialogue sessions.