Our Mission

Approved by the Board of Trustees - October 11, 2019

Next Board of Trustees Scheduled Review - January 2023

The primary mission of the University of South Carolina Columbia is the education of the state’s citizens through teaching, research, creative activity, and community engagement. Among America’s oldest and most comprehensive public universities, the University of South Carolina Columbia is the major research institution of the university system and its largest campus. At the heart of its mission lies the university’s responsibility to state and society to promote the dissemination of knowledge, cultural enrichment, and an enhanced quality of life.

The University of South Carolina Columbia serves a diverse population of students with widely varying backgrounds, career goals, and levels of aspiration. The university offers over 320 degrees at the bachelor's, master's, doctoral, and professional program levels, affording students the most comprehensive array of educational programs in the state. Opportunities for personal and career development are provided to the citizens of South Carolina through outreach and continuing education activities. The university provides additional opportunities for associate degrees through Fort Jackson and through the oversight of regional Palmetto College campuses (Lancaster, Salkehatchie, Sumter, and Union).

Through classroom and laboratory instruction delivered in a variety of face-to-face and distance learning formats and modalities, degree programs are offered in the following areas: arts and sciences; business; education; engineering and computing; hospitality, retail, and sport management; information and communications; law; medicine; music; nursing; pharmacy; public health; and social work. The depth and breadth of its graduate programs distinguishes the University of South Carolina Columbia from all other institutions of higher learning in South Carolina.

Recognized by the Carnegie Foundation as a top research and community engaged institution, nationally ranked in start-up businesses, and conferring over 30% of all bachelor’s and graduate degrees awarded at public institutions in South Carolina, the university has a profound relevance, reach, and impact on the people of the state. As the flagship institution of the university system, the University of South Carolina Columbia leads the way in providing all students with the highest-quality education, including the knowledge, skills, and values necessary for success and responsible citizenship in a complex and changing world through engagement in nationally and internationally ranked research, scholarship, community outreach, and artistic creation.