To provide excellent service to its clients, any organization needs to have a clear-cut statement of its mission and vision. The vision and mission statements will bring the organization towards its desired direction.
Universities, as prime movers of change in society, need to be exemplars of good practices along this concern. To make academic institutions relevant to the society’s needs, there is a need to evaluate its mission and vision statements.
Along this concern, Dr. Alvior conducted an exploratory study on a state university’s vision and mission statements. She also studied the goals and objectives of the graduate school of the same university. This article sums up the result of that study. – The Editor
The success of an institution depends upon unity in people’s thoughts and interests, both physically and philosophically. The view of the world is influenced by the values the people hold in their institution. They need to reconcile differing perspectives, find common ground, and create a shared vision and mission.
The shared vision statement should be clear, concise and create a visual image in the mind of the reader. The mission, on the other hand, tells how a group should behave to reach the shared vision. The statement becomes a tool to communicate the group’s purpose to others. This can generate enthusiasm and excitement in performing the work at hand.
According to Kent Peterson (1995), schools are likely to be more successful in achieving in-depth learning when leaders work with the staff and the community to build a collective educational vision that is clear, compelling and connected to teaching and learning. This collective vision helps focus attention on what is important, motivates the staff and the students, and increases the sense of shared responsibility for student learning.
Moreover, Jerry Bamburg, a professor of Educational Administration and Director of the Center for Effective Schools at the University of Washington in Seattle, discusses the benefits of a clearly defined school vision, to wit:
“Schools, like any organization, function best when the staff have a clear idea about what is important. The schools that have been most successful in addressing and increasing the academic achievement of their students have benefited from a clarity of purpose that is grounded in a shared set of core values and beliefs. Primary among the beliefs that school staff must share are high expectations for all students and for themselves”.
Likewise, a professor of Education in Northeastern Illinois University, Samuel Betances, describes the administrator’s role in building a collective vision in the school and community, in a presentation at the July 1992 Summer Institute of NCREL’s Academy for Urban School Leaders. He said that it is important to set a tone as instructional leaders – a tone in which people are encouraged to bring whatever they want when they come to an organization. And whatever expertise they bring should be expanded, built upon, and respected by the administrative leadership in order to universalize the spirit.
With these principles in mind, the Palawan State University (PSU) and its Graduate School conducted a strategic planning workshop in 1999. The university reformulated its vision and mission.
In 2001, the Graduate School started to offer new academic programs in response to the needs of the community like Diploma in Teaching, Diploma in Social Science Teaching, Diploma in Language Teaching, Diploma in Physical Education and Master of Arts in Education and Master of Science in Environmental Management.
As a result, the graduate programs in Education and Public Administration were awarded the candidate status (Level 1) by the Accrediting Agency of Chartered Colleges and Universities (AACCUP) in 1999 and the accredited Status (Level 2) in 2002.
To improve further on its course offerings in the Graduate School (GS), a study was conducted to once again evaluate how the university performs as perceived by its clients. The main purpose of this study is to determine the level of stakeholders’ awareness and acceptance of the University’s vision, mission, goals and objectives.
Specifically, this study attempted to answer the following questions (next page please):