Educating the Whole Student

One of the great virtues of a residential liberal arts college like Haverford is the attention to holistic student development through rigorous academics, enriching and supporting co-­curricular and extracurricular opportunities, and the intimacy and energy of communal living. In many ways, there is notable constancy in the experiences of Haverford students over the years. Fords chart their own educational courses, govern themselves, and resolve social and residential issues as a community. The Honor Code, Customs, diverse programs from the arts to athletics, and multiple avenues for engagement with communities on and off campus remain foundational to the Haverford experience. Student idealism remains palpable: Haverford students now as always want both to “do well” and “do good” as undergraduates and as citizens.

In other ways, current generations of Haverford students are distinctly different. They are more diverse than a generation ago by virtually any measure, bringing with them a wide range of life experiences, cultural heritages, racial and gender identities, sexual orientation, religious beliefs, socioeconomic backgrounds, abilities, values, learning styles, languages, and priorities.   Convening at Haverford a diverse student population to learn together and from each other is an expression of our core institutional values. Our commitment to diversity reflects the enduring Quaker principles of equality, peace, integrity, and community. Diversity is also foundational to a liberal education that will prepare students for “lives that speak” in an increasingly pluralistic and globalized world. Supporting our students and their evolving needs requires our community’s full attention, including: strong, coherent, consistent academic advising; coordination among support functions; regular professional development for faculty and staff; and deep understanding of opportunities and challenges of working and living in a diverse community.

In recognition of both the value of Haverford’s abiding traditions and strengths, and the ever-­changing needs of students, this Plan aims to:

  • foster a self-­governing, diverse, and inclusive residential student community that lives out the values of trust, concern, and respect;
  • •ensure that co-­curricular resources contribute to and are aligned with academic initiatives and innovations as outlined in this strategic plan;
  • •coordinate, integrate, and enhance student support services and academic resources; and
  • •respond to and prepare for student needs as they evolve alongside our changing demography.

These imperatives guide our work across two key co-­curricular arenas: Fostering an Engaged, Inclusive Community, and Enhancing Student Development.