Mission, Vision, and Core Values

Our Mission

William Paterson University as a proud diverse community, designated as a public Hispanic and Minority Serving Institution, creates transformative academic and extracurricular experiences leading to meaningful careers, and promotes economic and social mobility. We empower our students through intentional and holistic support systems within flexible, innovative, and inclusive environments. Our graduates will power the New Jersey economy and beyond, thriving professionally and personally through a commitment to community engagement and social justice.

Approved by the William Paterson University Board of Trustees November 17, 2023.

Vision: the University in 2022

William Paterson University will be widely recognized as the model of outstanding and affordable public higher education characterized by rigorous academic preparation and a wide array of experiential, co-curricular and extra-curricular opportunities. The University will be distinctive for nationally recognized programs that prepare its students for the careers of today and tomorrow and known for its support of the personal growth and academic success of a highly diverse student body. It will be an institution of first choice for students committed to transforming their lives and making a difference.

Core Values

At the core of everything the University does, the following five values define its ethos and fundamental beliefs:

Academic Excellence

As individuals and as an institution, we seek to model and to impart to our students the highest standards of knowledge, inquiry, preparation, academic freedom and integrity, as well as an expanded sense of what an individual can accomplish.

Creating Knowledge

We strive to expand the boundaries of knowledge and creative expression in and outside of our classrooms. We help students think imaginatively and critically and encourage innovative solutions to social issues, the challenges of ecological sustainability and economic growth and ethical dilemmas confronting our communities, regions, nation and world.

Student Success

Students are our reason for being. We judge our effectiveness, progress and success in terms of how well we provide a platform for their personal, intellectual and professional development, enabling them to transform their lives and become civically engaged.


We value and promote the expression of all aspects of diversity. We maintain a campus culture that welcomes diversity of personal circumstances and experiences and prepares students to become effective citizens in an increasingly diverse, interdependent and pluralistic society.


We challenge our students, faculty, staff and alumni to recognize their responsibility to improve the world around them, starting locally and expanding globally. We offer critical expertise to New Jersey and our region, while our scholarship and public engagement address pressing community needs in the region and beyond in keeping with our public mission.

Approved by the William Paterson University Board of Trustees March 19, 2012.