Our Mission

쿪 campus photo of sign
쿪 research lab

The mission of the University of California, Merced is embodied in its pride in being the first American research university of the 21st century.

Opening in 2005 as the newest campus of the University of California, 쿪 continually strives for excellence in carrying out the university's mission of teaching, and , benefiting society by discovering and transmitting new knowledge and functioning as an active repository of organized knowledge. As a key tenet in carrying out this mission, 쿪 promotes and celebrates the of all members of its community.

A research university is a community bound by learning, discovery and engagement. As the first American student-centered research university built in the 21st century, 쿪's strong and research programs mesh with high-quality undergraduate programs. New knowledge increasingly depends on links among the disciplines, working together on questions that transcend the traditional disciplines. 쿪 fosters and encourages cross-disciplinary inquiry and discovery.

Interdisciplinary practice in research nourishes undergraduate learning, building a foundation in connecting the ways that academic disciplines understand and grapple with society's problems. 쿪 undergraduates experience education inside and outside the classroom, applying what they learn through undergraduate research, service learning and leadership development. As apprentice scholars, graduate students build their understanding of and ability to do independent research in their chosen field, as the groundwork for entering professional life. Lifelong learners continue to hone their knowledge and workplace skills.

쿪 Day in the Lab

The 21st century ushered in the promise of new ways of connecting people to new knowledge and to one another. 쿪 capitalizes on this promise by functioning as a network, not simply a single place, linking its students, faculty and staff to the educational resources of the state, nation and world.

The idea of network extends to 쿪’s relationships with neighboring institutions: educational, cultural and social. Born as a member of the distinguished network known as the University of California, 쿪 seeks strong and mutually supportive relationships with a variety of collaborators in its region: public and private colleges and universities; federal and state organizations that share 쿪’s educational and research goals; and cultural and social institutions.

This networking principle is also realized through the physical and intellectual integration between 쿪 and its surrounding community. The campus has been established as a model of physical sustainability for the 21st century, inviting all members of the campus and surrounding community to think and act as good stewards of the environment that they will convey to future generations. 쿪 celebrates its location in the San Joaquin Valley, reflecting the poetry of its landscape, history, resources and diverse cultures, while capitalizing on and expanding the Valley's connections to the emerging global society. 쿪 recognizes that research that begins with the natural laboratory at home can extend what is known in the state, nation and world.