Valparaiso University awarded the Carnegie Elective Classification for Leadership for Public Purpose

Valparaiso University has been awarded the Carnegie Elective Classification for Leadership for Public Purpose, a designation that acknowledges the strength of Valpo’s mission that “prepares students to lead and serve in both church and society.”

Valpo is in a select group of only 25 universities in the United States to earn the Leadership for Public Purpose classification in 2024. The 2024 list of institutions — which is the inaugural class to receive this classification — was announced by the Carnegie Foundation. Click here for more information on the classification, including the list of 25 universities.

“This honor speaks to Valparaiso University’s demonstrated commitment to provide an educational experience that prepares our graduates to lead lives of leadership and service,” said Valpo President Jose Padilla. “Our graduates are sought after for their knowledge, character, integrity, and wisdom. That translates into thoughtful, compassionate, and ethical leaders ready to take on the challenges of a complex global world.” 

Leadership is at the foundation of a Valpo education and the focus of initiatives in the University’s strategic plan, Uplift Valpo: Our Beacon for the Journey Forward. The successful application and awarding of the Carnegie Foundation’s Elective Classification for Leadership for Public Purpose has accomplished a primary goal of Uplift Valpo. The impact of the recognition will accommodate further efforts to align the campus mission, culture, leadership, resources, and practices in support of dynamic and noteworthy leadership engagement.

Specifically, the Classification supports the academic goal that all graduates will establish a leadership and service portfolio prior to earning their degree. Every student’s tenure at Valpo will conclude with a unique portfolio of leadership and service experiences with a combination of theory and practice that demonstrate their abilities within these domains.

The notification letter from the Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching stated, “This classification acknowledges campuses like yours that are intentionally cultivating leadership abilities across students, faculty, and staff.”

Valpo has long been recognized for graduates who are leaders in their workplace and communities. The Institute for Leadership and Service, the Richard C. and Francelia A. Gozon University Chair in Values-Based Leadership, Study Abroad and service-learning experiences, committed faculty, and a wide range of student organizations and activities all provide leadership opportunities for students. 

Carnegie Badge

“Leadership is core to Valpo’s mission,” said Provost Eric Johnson ‘87, Ph.D. “As a Valpo graduate, who has come back to this special place and served as a faculty member, dean, and now provost, I believe that every student has the opportunity to develop and hone their leadership skills. This Carnegie recognition will drive us to develop even more impactful curricular and co-curricular initiatives across the University.” 

The 2024 class of 25 institutions is the inaugural group of universities to receive the Carnegie Elective Classification for Leadership for Public Purpose. Of the 25 institutions, they are located in 19 states across the United States, 15 are public institutions, 10 are private, and two are service academies. Valpo is the only school in the state of Indiana to hold this classification.