Mission and Identity



Xavier University is the sixth-oldest Catholic and fourth-oldest Jesuit university in the United States. Undergraduate enrollment is 4,572 students and graduate enrollment is 1,713.


"Xavier men and women become people of learning and reflection, integrity and achievement, in solidarity for and with others."

Accepted by the Xavier Board of Trustees on Sept. 28, 2012.
Read more on the Vision Statement. "The Vision of the University" keynote is annually presented at the "President's Welcome For New Hires."


"Xavier is a Jesuit Catholic university rooted in the liberal arts tradition. Our mission is to educate each student intellectually, morally, and spiritually. We create learning opportunities through rigorous academic and professional programs integrated with co-curricular engagement. In an inclusive environment of open and free inquiry, we prepare students for a world that is increasingly diverse, complex and interdependent. Driven by our commitment to the common good and to the education of the whole person, the Xavier community challenges and supports students as they cultivate lives of reflection, compassion and informed action."

The Mission Statement was accepted by the Xavier Board of Trustees on Sept. 28, 2012. The statement is painted on the wall of Justice Hall near the Hoff Dining Commons, visible by students every day and by visitors on the Office of Admission's campus tours.


"Mission, Reflection, Discernment, Solidarity and Kinship, Service Rooted in Justice and Love, Magis, Cura Personalis"

The articulation of the University's values through "The Gifts of Our Ignatian Heritage" was produced by Discernment Group I. Discernment Groups I (faculty and staff), II (administrators), and III (faculty) were charged in 2007, 2009 and 2009, respectively, to explore the structure, expression, and integration of Xavier's mission and identity through all roles on campus.

The Gifts are represented:

  • As the foci of the Student Learning Outcomes of the revised Core Curriculum.
  • As institutional goals in the Annual Performance Appraisal form for staff and administrators.
  • In campus art, including the Hoff Dining Commons and on the interior entrance to the McDonald Library.
  • On banners in campus ceremonies, i.e., Spirit Celebration, Baccalaureate Mass.

University Strategic Plan

Accepted by the Board of Trustees on Dec. 5, 2014, The Xavier Way is centered on four areas:

  • Strengthening Our Jesuit Mission, Vision, and Values
  • Adapting the Jesuit Educational Tradition and Strengthening the Cura Personalis of Our Students
  • Promoting Cura Apostolica: The University's Financial and Organization Health
  • Advancing Xavier's Identity and Brand

Seeking Integration and Wisdom: The Xavier Way

The purpose of the Seeking Integration and Wisdom document in capturing the University's mission and identity is best stated in the opening paragraph:

"At Xavier University we are privileged to be part of an intellectual tradition that is both Jesuit and Catholic. This tradition is not a timeless and static storehouse of abstract ideas. It is a living history of persons and communities who have discovered God in the encounter with Jesus Christ through the power of the Holy Spirit. Catholic universities are rooted in this transformative encounter and live it in different ways. The purpose of the 'Seeking Integration and Wisdom' document is to articulate what it means for us-the particular community of persons that is Xavier University today-to be a Jesuit Catholic university rooted in the liberal arts tradition." (para. 1)

On May 2, 2014, the Board of Trustees approved the document and determined "that it should be placed among the records of the University to inform and influence the University for years to come."

Statements from this document are quoted at the beginning of relevant sections. The full document is in Appendix 1.

The Xavier Student Commitment

"We are Xavier Musketeers. We are unique individuals who come together in the spirit of St. Ignatius, to learn together, to serve together, and we will succeed in changing the world together. We act with integrity, justice and generosity. All for one and one for all."

The Commitment was written by students and accepted by the Board of Trustees in Spring 2014.

Organizational structure

The Senior Executive Team is comprised of the Chief Academic Officer, Chief Financial Officer, Chief Development Officer and Administrative Vice President. The President's Cabinet includes the Senior Executive Team members and 20 area leaders, including the Chief Mission Officer (CMO) who reports to the President.

Brief history

The school was founded in 1831 as a men's college in downtown Cincinnati, adjacent to St. Francis Xavier Church on Sycamore Street. The Athenaeum, as it was then called, was dedicated by the first bishop of the new Diocese of Cincinnati, Bishop Edward Fenwick, on Oct. 17, 1831. Upon Bishop John Baptist Purcell's request, the Society of Jesus took control of The Athenaeum in 1840, and the name was changed to St. Xavier College in honor of the Jesuit missionary. The College moved in 1912 to its current location. St. Xavier College and St. Xavier High School officially split in 1919, and the college became Xavier University in 1930.

Xavier's largest and newest residence hall is named in honor of Bishop Fenwick, O.P.

Supporting information


Mission Examen Overview Picture