Shared Futures: Guiding Principles

A 21st Century liberal education must provide students with the knowledge and commitment to be socially responsible citizens in a diverse democracy and increasingly interconnected world. Colleges and universities committed to liberal education have important civic responsibilities to their communities, their nation, and the larger world. Global learning is the pathway through which students become prepared to fulfill these responsibilities.

Global learning helps students:

  • Gain a deep, comparative knowledge of the world’s peoples and problems
  • Explore the historical legacies that have created the dynamics and tensions of their world
  • Recognize the construction of their own identities as shaped by currents of power and privilege
  • Develop intercultural competencies so they can move across boundaries and unfamiliar territory and see the world from multiple perspectives
  • Sustain difficult conversations in the face of highly emotional and perhaps uncongenial differences
  • Understand—and perhaps redefine—democratic principles and practices within a global context
  • Gain opportunities to engage in practical work with fundamental issues that affect communities not yet well served by their societies
  • Believe that their actions and ideas will influence the world in which they live