Georgia College is Georgia's designated Public Liberal Arts University, located in historic Milledgeville, Georgia, less than a dozen miles from the geographic center of the State. Milledgeville was the antebellum capital of Georgia and is a center of history and culture featuring beautiful antebellum homes and historic buildings. The University enhances the town's beauty with its architectural blending of majestic buildings of red brick and white Corinthian columns. Georgia's Old Governor's Mansion, one of the finest examples of Greek revival architecture in the United States, is the founding building of the University and remains central to the University's Mission. The Milledgeville campus is complemented by additional acreage in Baldwin County with facilities for athletics, recreation and outdoor and integrative education.
GC was chartered in 1889 as Georgia Normal and Industrial College. Its emphasis at the time was largely vocational, and its major task was to prepare young women for teaching or industrial careers. In 1917, in keeping with economic and cultural changes in the state, Georgia Normal and Industrial College was authorized to grant degrees, the first of which was awarded in 1921. In 1922, the institution's name was changed to Georgia State College for Women. The University has been a unit of the University System of Georgia since it was formed in 1932. The name was changed to Women's College of Georgia in 1961, and, when the institution became coeducational in 1967, it became Georgia College at Milledgeville. The name was later shortened to Georgia College. In August of 1996, the Board of Regents approved a change of name to Georgia College & State University, and a new mission as Georgia's Public Liberal Arts University. The university is best known by its shorthand name, Georgia College.
As the state's designated public liberal arts university, Georgia College is committed to combining the educational experiences typical of esteemed private liberal arts colleges with the affordability of public higher education. GC is a residential learning community that emphasizes undergraduate education and offers selected graduate programs. The faculty are dedicated to challenging students and fostering excellence in the classroom and beyond. GC seeks to endow its graduates with a passion for achievement, a lifelong curiosity, and exuberance for learning.
Georgia College aims to produce graduates who are well prepared for careers or advanced study and who are instilled with exceptional qualities of mind and character. These include an inquisitive, analytical mind; respect for human diversity and individuality; a sense of civic and global responsibility; sound ethical principles; effective writing, speaking, and quantitative skills; and a healthy lifestyle.
While GC faculty are committed to community service and are creatively engaged in their fields of specialization, they focus their attention primarily on maintaining excellence in instruction and guiding students. Students are endowed with both information and values through small classes, interdisciplinary studies, close association with the faculty and staff in and beyond the classroom, lively involvement in cultural life, and service to the community. In turn, GC seeks to provide communities and employers with graduates who exhibit professionalism, responsibility, service, leadership, and integrity.
Core Mission Statement for State Universities
In addition to the University's Vision Statement and Principles, the University's mission embraces the following principles from the Board of Regents' Core Mission Statement for State Universities:
The core characteristics include:
- a commitment to a teaching/learning environment, both inside and outside the classroom, that sustains instructional excellence, serves a diverse and college prepared student body, promotes high levels of student achievement, offers academic assistance, and provides learning support programs for a limited student cohort;
- a high quality general education program supporting a variety of disciplinary, interdisciplinary, and professional academic programming at the baccalaureate level, with selected master's and educational specialist degrees;
- a commitment to public service, continuing education, technical assistance, and economic development activities that address the needs, improve the quality of life, and raise the educational level within the university's scope of influence;
- a commitment to scholarly and creative work to enhance instructional effectiveness and to encourage faculty scholarly pursuits, and a commitment to applied research in selected areas of institutional strength and area need.