Our Core Values

At Elmhurst College, you’ll prepare for a life that counts. Elmhurst is affiliated with the United Church of Christ. Like the Church, the College values free inquiry into life’s ultimate questions, and honors the integrity of the individual conscience. No one will preach to you here. You will get no easy answers. Rather, alongside people of many faiths—and of none—you will honestly engage the pressing issues that face the human spirit in a global society.

We know what we stand for. Elmhurst is a place of values and conviction. We were founded by 19th-century reformers who believed in human potential, loved learning and had high standards. More than 140 years later, we still do. We still attract students and teachers who think for themselves and act on their principles; who challenge and respect one another; who engage, serve and celebrate our diverse, dynamic, interdependent world. To be clear about things, we wrote down our core values. Here they are:

Core Value: Intellectual Excellence
We value intellectual freedom, curiosity and engagement; critical and creative inquiry; rigorous debate; and intellectual integrity in all endeavors. We are committed to the meaningful integration of liberal learning and professional preparation and to learning as a life-long pursuit.

Core Value: Community
We are committed to cultural diversity, mutual respect among all persons, compassion for others, honest and open communication, and fairness and integrity in all that we do.

Core Value: Social Responsibility
Mindful of humanity’s interdependence and the dignity of every individual, we are committed to social justice on local, national and global levels. We will act on our social responsibilities and call others to do the same.

Core Value: Stewardship
We are committed stewards of the human, fiscal and physical resources entrusted to us. We are accountable to one another for the quality of our community, the strength of our finances and the utility and beauty of our campus as a place of intellectual engagement and personal growth. We pursue innovations which respect the environment and foster sustainability in the management of our resources.

Core Value: Faith, Meaning and Values
We value the development of the human spirit in its many forms and the exploration of life’s ultimate questions through dialogue and service. We value religious freedom and its expressions on campus. Grounded in our own commitments and traditions as well as those of the United Church of Christ, we cherish values that create lives of intellectual excellence, strong community, social responsibility and committed stewardship.

We’ll ask you, “What will you stand for?” The Elmhurst Experience starts with this question. We ask it for the first time at new student orientation. You’ll hear it expressed in different ways throughout your Elmhurst career. And you’ll shape and find your own answers.

We want to learn more from you! If the Elmhurst Experience is the type of college experience you want to have, you can apply today with our online application. If you would like to schedule a visit to our beautiful campus, take a look at our options for private visits, group tours and open houses. If a bit more information is what you need, visit the main Elmhurst College website where you'll find more information about the campus, our academic programs and everything else the Elmhurst Experience is about.