Mission Statement Examples: Academic and Personal (2023)

Mission statements are a great way to answer the questions who, what, when, where, why, and how. Companies, organizations, schools, and individuals all use mission statements to convey what they hope to achieve as well as their values and vision.

Mission Statement Examples: Academic and Personal (1) Business goals and philosophy concept as College mission statement examples


Personal Mission Statement Examples

Like a business sells a product and a nonprofit sells a cause, with your mission statement you are essentially selling yourself. You are telling an employer, school or organization what you can do for them.

Examples of Simple Mission Statements

A personal statement answers some important questions: What are your goals? What is your purpose? What do you enjoy? You can answer these questions in the form of a mission statement.

For example:

  • I constantly strive to be the best version of myself.
  • My mission is to live honestly and to stay true to myself.
  • I aspire to learn at least one new thing each day.
  • I want to serve others.
  • I wish to make people happy.
  • I will live every day as though it were my last.
  • My purpose in life is to love hard and laugh often.
  • To make the world a better place for all.
  • To provide communities with better opportunities.
  • To always try, even if I don't succeed.
  • To treat others the way I wish to be treated.
  • To make at least one person smile every day.
  • To live a life worth remembering.

Examples of Personal Mission Statements From Famous People

These famous and successful entrepreneurs, activists and personalities have one thing in common: They began with a vision. They put this vision into words in the following mission statements.

  • "To make people happy" – Walt Disney
  • “... to be a teacher. And to be known for inspiring my students to be more than they thought they could be.” – Oprah Winfrey
  • "If something is important enough you should try, even if the probable outcome is failure." - Elon Musk
  • “Not merely to survive, but to thrive; and to do so with some passion, some compassion, some humor, and some style.” – Maya Angelou
  • “I shall not fear anyone on Earth. I shall fear only God. I shall not bear ill will toward anyone. I shall not submit to injustice from anyone. I shall conquer untruth by truth. And in resisting untruth, I shall put up with all suffering.” – Mahatma Gandhi
  • "I want to serve the people. And I want every girl, every child to be educated" – Malala Yousafzai
  • “To use my gifts of intelligence, charisma, and serial optimism to cultivate the self-worth and net-worth of women around the world.” - Amanda Steinberg

Sample Statements That Include Personal and Professional Goals

Sometimes a mission statement can be a personal goal you put in writing. This can take the form of a short-term plan, a long-term plan or a lifetime goal. Having this mission statement handy can prove useful in job interviews when you get the dreaded "five-year plan" question or to help you focus on what matters to you.

  • In five years I hope to start my own business, buy a house and have a family.
  • I want to use my gifts and skills to empower myself and the people around me.
  • To use my creativity and passion for learning to inspire my students, who will in turn inspire each other and the world around them.
  • To empower women to chase their dreams and to be confident in the workplace as well as in their own skin.
  • In one year's time, I aspire to be a certified nurse who is helping save and change people's lives.
  • I aspire to a promotion at my company through hard work, building relationships and learning from experts in the field.


(Video) How to Write a Personal Mission Statement!

Student Mission Statement Examples

Students applying for college, graduate school or even some high schools are often required to write an application essay that includes a personal mission statement.

General Mission Statements for Students

For students in school or getting ready to go to move on to higher education, a strong mission statement is helpful not just on a resume or application, but to help you focus on what you hope to achieve with your education.

  • To acquire knowledge that I can use in the workforce and in my daily life to better myself and the world around me.
  • To build a network of like-minded individuals with a passion for learning.
  • Pursuing an education will help me open doors as well as open my mind to new possibilities.
  • To discover my passion and where my skills are best suited.
  • To become the person I was meant to be.

Sample College Application Mission Statement

When you are applying for a college, it is important to focus on your personal goals and past achievements. This can also give an insight into your writing skills, reasons for applying for the school, and personality and passions to set you apart from the crowd.

I have dreamed of attending Columbia University ever since I toured the campus two years ago. I was taken in not only by the beauty of the campus, but the sense of community. The professors encouraged my love of science and ambition to pursue studying Biology. I felt like I belonged then, and if given the opportunity I know I would learn from and contribute to the program over the next four years.


Sample Graduate Student Mission Statement

In higher education, you typically focus on a more specialized area of study. In this example, an English student applying for a graduate program highlights their past work and research. This shows that they are well-versed in this topic and wish to explore it further across Wilde’s other works.

I plan to contribute to the graduate program by focusing my research on Oscar Wilde's literature and the themes of vanity and social obligation as they apply throughout his works such as The Picture of Dorian Gray, Salomé, The Importance of Being Earnest, etc. I studied British literature in my undergraduate program and my thesis The Picture of Dorian Gray and the Art of Superficiality was published in the university’s literary journal. If accepted into this program, I hope to continue my research and work closely with professionals in the field of Victorian literature.

Professional Mission Statement Examples

Professional mission statements can often overlap with personal mission statements depending on the context. When you are applying for a job, you may choose to include a personal mission statement (also known as a personal summary statement or objective) on your resume or cover letter. These can be short sentences that pack a punch.

To lead my team by example, to inspire them as they inspire me, and to share that inspiration with our customers.

The previous statement is vague but indicates that the person applying for the position is dedicated and hard-working.

Experienced administrative assistant of 10 years with a demonstrated track record of project and database management. Offering the highest quality of leadership, field expertise, superlative understanding of communications trends, billing systems, and meeting standards as well as tireless dedication to the brand if I am chosen for this position.

The following statement displays the applicant’s passion for their work and that they would bring that same passion to this position if given the opportunity. This kind of statement can be a strong way to close a cover letter.

(Video) Mission Possible: Write a personal mission statement

If chosen for this position, I will coach this team with integrity and honor. I will expect of my players no more and no less than I would expect from myself. Furthermore, I will dedicate myself to giving us the best possible chance of being winners on the field or off.


Sample Entry Level Mission Statement

If you do not have a lot of work experience, your mission statement can highlight your academic, charitable and personal achievements as well as what you hope to accomplish and what you could bring to this position.

I bring to the table five years of experience in customer service in the retail industry where I regularly assisted and aided customers, managed inventory and represented the company’s brand through exemplary service. Moreover, I have volunteered with my local community center for over seven years mentoring children and helping them with their homework, raising money for community events and assisting with maintenance projects. If hired, I would contribute to your company with my strong interpersonal skills, work ethic and dedication to brand integrity.

Sample Volunteer Mission Statement

In this example, a student or employee states their intention to do volunteer work with a particular organization. They also clarify when they will do this work and for how long.

I plan to contribute to the volunteer organization by spending four hours each Saturday donating my time and by proposing new ideas to the organization's leaders.

The following example demonstrates how this person will contribute to their community and what specifically they will do for the environment locally.

I will contribute positively to this community by cleaning up trash at the park, and by teaching others the importance of environmental care.

Examples of Nonprofit Mission Statements

Nonprofit organizations use mission statements to convey what their cause is and how they plan to achieve their goals.

Catholic Charities USA Mission Statement

Catholic Charities USA serves a number of people and contributes to multiple causes. Their mission statement focuses on the broader goals and outreach of the organization.

"The mission of Catholic Charities is to provide service to people in need, to advocate for justice in social structures, and to call the entire church and other people of good will to do the same."

MADD Mission Statement

The organization Mothers Against Drunk Driving or MADD gets straight to the point with their mission statement. The name of the organization tells you what their goal is, and the mission statement makes it blatantly clear by highlighting specific forms of driving under the influence.

"The mission of Mothers Against Drunk Driving (MADD) is to end drunk driving, help fight drugged driving, support the victims of these violent crimes, and prevent underage drinking."
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PETA Mission Statement

PETA or People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals has a longer mission statement, but one that gives a thorough overview of their goals and track record.

"People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA) is the largest animal rights organization in the world, with more than 3 million members and supporters. PETA focuses its attention on the four areas in which the largest numbers of animals suffer the most intensely for the longest periods of time: on factory farms, in the clothing trade, in laboratories, and in the entertainment industry. We also work on a variety of other issues, including the cruel killing of beavers, birds, and other "pests" as well as cruelty to domesticated animals. PETA works through public education, cruelty investigations, research, animal rescue, legislation, special events, celebrity involvement, and protest campaigns."


Examples of University Mission Statements

When choosing a school, what is it that draws you in? Is it a prestigious name? A strong track record? A beautiful campus? For some, it is the mission statement.

Harvard University Mission Statement

Harvard University is one of the most prestigious and famous universities in the world. Their mission statement is lengthy, but it highlights many of the factors that make the school so legendary.

"The mission of Harvard College is to educate the citizens and citizen-leaders for our society. We do this through our commitment to the transformative power of a liberal arts and sciences education. Beginning in the classroom with exposure to new ideas, new ways of understanding, and new ways of knowing, students embark on a journey of intellectual transformation. Through a diverse living environment, where students live with people who are studying different topics, who come from different walks of life and have evolving identities, intellectual transformation is deepened and conditions for social transformation are created. From this we hope that students will begin to fashion their lives by gaining a sense of what they want to do with their gifts and talents, assessing their values and interests, and learning how they can best serve the world."

Georgetown University Mission Statement

Georgetown University is another very old and elite institution that emphasizes its past, present and future in its mission statement.

"... Georgetown College is committed to the Jesuit traditions of an integrated education and of productive research in the liberal arts, including fine arts, humanities, languages, sciences, and social sciences. The College seeks to expand the imagination, foster the life of the spirit, cultivate lifelong learning, encourage service to God and humanity, and promote respect for diversity in an age of global community."

University of Phoenix Mission Statement

A shorter statement that still packs a punch comes from the University of Phoenix.

"University of Phoenix provides access to higher education opportunities that enable students to develop knowledge and skills necessary to achieve their professional goals, improve the productivity of their organizations and provide leadership and service to their communities."
(Video) How to Write a Mission Statement

Examples of Corporate Mission Statements

When you buy your favorite brands, do you ever stop to consider why you buy from that company and not another one that makes the same product? The likely answer is that the top brands know how to market their products, and one of the ways they do this is by having a clear mission statement.

Amazon Mission Statement

The mega-corporation Amazon makes this straightforward statement:

"Our vision is to be earth's most customer centric company; to build a place where people can come to find and discover anything they might want to buy online."

Facebook Mission Statement

Sometimes it’s best to keep it simple. While Facebook has rebranded itself over the years, it has maintained this brief but memorable mission statement to “make the world more connected” or:

"… to give people the power to build community and bring the world closer together."

Nike Mission Statement

Similar to the previous examples, Nike keeps their mission statement short and to the point. Additionally, the alliteration in “inspiration” and “innovation” helps to make the statement catchy and stick in people’s minds.

"To bring inspiration and innovation to every athlete in the world."


Formulating a Mission Statement

Organizations, groups and individuals all use mission statements to communicate their goals, whether professional or personal. Mission statements can be quite lengthy, or they can be a simple sentence or two. This usually comes down to how much information you need to convey. For example, a company may want a short, catchy statement, or they may opt for a lengthy but informative statement depending on what they wish to say. The same is true for you. Typically, if you are writing a mission statement for a college application, it will need to be longer and more detailed whereas a mission statement on your resume should be no more than a couple of lines.

Make Knowledge Your Mission

Mission statements are a great way to communicate your message and goals to others. Look for other ways to express your professional and personal goals in writing.

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(Video) How to Create an Empowering Personal Mission Statement

Alyssa Serrani

Staff Writer


What is a good example of a personal mission statement? ›

"To be a leader to my team, live a balanced life and make a difference." "To inspire others to achieve great things." "To thrive in my journey through life and learn life's lessons along the way." "To be kind to others and myself."

What is an academic personal mission statement? ›

A personal statement answers some important questions: What are your goals? What is your purpose? What do you enjoy? You can answer these questions in the form of a mission statement.

What should a good mission statement answer? ›

The definition of a mission statement is a concise description of your organization's core purpose, answering the question, “why do we exist?”. A mission needs to boldly state why you exist, and why you do what you do. The best mission statements express your core purpose and why you exist with clarity.

What are the 5 questions a mission statement must answer? ›

10 Questions to Answer When Writing Your Mission Statement
  • Why are you in business? ...
  • Who are your customers? ...
  • What image of your business do you want to convey? ...
  • What is the nature of your products and services? ...
  • What level of service do you provide? ...
  • What roles do you and your employees play?
3 Feb 2015

What is mission statement give example? ›

Some generic examples of mission statements would be, "To provide the best service possible within the banking sector for our customers." or "To provide the best experience for all of our customers." The reason why businesses make use of mission statements is to make it clear what they look to achieve as an ...

How do you start an academic mission statement? ›

Here's a template that you can use to create an Academic Mission Statement: I use [methodologies/theoretical frames] to study [population] [phenomenon] [context] in order to [change you want to see in the world].

What is your personal mission? ›

What Is a Personal Mission Statement? A personal mission statement defines who you are as a person (or as a team member where you work) and identifies your purpose, whether that's in the office or simply in life. It explains how you aim to pursue that purpose, and why it matters so much to you.

How do you write a 7 Habits personal mission statement? ›

The second is what you want to be – what character strengths you want to have, what qualities you want to develop.
  • Step 1 Define what you want to be and do. ...
  • Step 2 Identify an Influential Person. ...
  • Step 3 Define your Life Roles. ...
  • Step 3 Define your Life Roles (continued)
  • Step 4 Write a Draft of your Personal Mission.

What 3 questions should a mission statement answer? ›

Here are four essential questions your company's mission statement must answer:
  • What do we do?
  • How do we do it?
  • Whom do we do it for?
  • What value are we bringing?
10 Jan 2013

What is a strong mission statement? ›

A good business mission statement should be between one and three sentences and never exceeds 100 words. This means they're a little longer than most company slogans, but they're still short, catchy, action-focused statements that encapsulate what your business does and what its values are.

How do you start a personal mission statement? ›

Steps for Developing a Personal Mission Statement
  1. Step 1: Identify Past Successes. Spend some time identifying four or five examples where you have had personal success in recent years. ...
  2. Step 2: Identify Core Values. ...
  3. Step 3: Identify Contributions. ...
  4. Step 4: Identify Goals. ...
  5. Step 5: Write Mission Statement.

What are the 3 most important components of a mission statement? ›

The three components of a mission statement include the purpose, values, and goals of the company.

What are 3 key parts of the mission statement? ›

What are the Three Parts of a Mission Statement?
  • The Key Market – Who is your target audience? ...
  • Your Contribution – The next component to a successful mission statement is outlining your contribution. ...
  • Distinction – The next component to a highly effective mission statement is distinction.

What is a short mission statement? ›

A mission statement is used by a company to explain, in simple and concise terms, its purpose(s) for being. It is usually one sentence or a short paragraph, explaining a company's culture, values, and ethics.

What are the 9 mission statements? ›

Two years later, (David, 1989) [13] identified nine key components i.e. customers, products / services, markets, technology, concern for survival, philosophy, self-concept, concern for public image, and concern for employees.

Who has the best mission statement? ›

Top 5 Best Company Mission Statements
  1. Twitter. The mission: “To give everyone the power to create and share ideas and information, instantly, without barriers.” The technology company aims to remove communication barriers and help people connect with one another. ...
  2. Clarks. ...
  3. MGM Resorts International. ...
  4. Coca-Cola. ...
  5. REI.
22 Mar 2016

What are the examples of mission and vision? ›

Mission statement: We strive to offer our customers the lowest possible prices, the best available selection, and the utmost convenience. Vision statement: To be Earth's most customer-centric company, where customers can find and discover anything they might want to buy online.

How do you answer a mission statement interview question? ›

How to answer the question "What is your personal mission statement?"
  1. Brainstorm what's most important to you. ...
  2. Evaluate how a specific role can help you meet your goals. ...
  3. Condense your ideas into a sentence or two. ...
  4. Be prepared to answer questions about your personal statement.
7 Dec 2021

How do you write a personal vision and mission statement examples? ›

“My vision is to be an honest, empathetic and impactful project leader and to be recognized internationally within my industry. I am committed to growing as a leader and delivering value-added projects to the end users. My mission is to create and lead a dream team where everyone is playing to their strengths.”

How do you write a mission statement for an academic department? ›

The mission statement should define the broad purposes the program or office/department is aiming to achieve, describe the community the program or office/department is designed to serve, and state the values and guiding principles which define its standards.

What is a good mission statement for a university? ›

Empowering our students to fulfill their academic and professional passions in a University that is diverse, welcoming, and inclusive for all students, faculty, and staff. Creating innovative connections among education, humanities, music, the social sciences, science, engineering, and health science.

What is the most important part of a mission statement? ›

Compelling Perspective

A good mission statement is typically concise and simple in nature. It focuses more on values and impact rather than the description of functions and processes. Be sure it expresses your organization's purpose or mission, sense of direction, and the meaning and significance it brings to people.

What is a personal mission statement and why is it important? ›

A personal mission statement simply states your purpose in life—it considers and combines all of your values into just a couple of sentences. It's important to have a personal mission statement as it motivates you to have a positive impact on the world and helps you feel more satisfied in your everyday life.

How do you write a clear mission statement? ›

  1. Step 1: Gather Information, Form a Planning Team and Organize a Meeting. ...
  2. Step 2: Define Whom the Organization Serves. ...
  3. Step 3: Clarify What the Organization Does. ...
  4. Step 4: Explain Why the Organization Does What it Does. ...
  5. Step 5: Describe How the Organization Delivers Products and Services.

How many sentences are in a mission statement? ›

If you are writing a mission statement, try to keep it between two and four sentences and a maximum of around 100 words. Above all, though, make sure to communicate your point clearly. It will likely be the case that your initial attempts may come up too long or too short.

Why are the most effective mission statements simple? ›

They Are Short

Shorter is better because you want to convey the purpose and goal of your business in a way that is simple, clear, and easy to understand. The more words you use, the more likely it is that you'll send out a garbled message to your audience.

How do I write my own mission statement? ›

Steps for Developing a Personal Mission Statement
  1. Step 1: Identify Past Successes. Spend some time identifying four or five examples where you have had personal success in recent years. ...
  2. Step 2: Identify Core Values. ...
  3. Step 3: Identify Contributions. ...
  4. Step 4: Identify Goals. ...
  5. Step 5: Write Mission Statement.

What are the 3 key things a mission statement should have? ›

Typically, a mission statement includes a basic description of the company, its purpose, and its goals.

What are the four 4 main questions the mission statement asks? ›

Here are four essential questions your company's mission statement must answer:
  • What do we do?
  • How do we do it?
  • Whom do we do it for?
  • What value are we bringing?
10 Jan 2013

What is a simple mission statement? ›

A mission statement is used by a company to explain, in simple and concise terms, its purpose(s) for being. It is usually one sentence or a short paragraph, explaining a company's culture, values, and ethics.

What is your personal mission for your career? ›

Personal mission statements are brief explanations of what you want to achieve in your career development. You can use a personal mission statement to outline your goals, find actionable ways to apply your skills and set specific tasks that help you reach your goals.

What makes a good personal mission statement? ›

A meaningful personal mission statement contains two basic elements. The first is what you want to do – what you want to accomplish, what contributions you want to make. The second is what you want to be – what character strengths you want to have, what qualities you want to develop.

What makes a powerful mission statement? ›

Meaningful. The first element of a powerful mission statement is that it needs to be meaningful. It needs to be easy to tell from the words in the mission statement how the organization is making the world a better place or making people's lives better. It can't just be different.

What are the five major characteristics of good mission statements? ›

General principles
  • Make it as succinct as possible. A mission statement should be as short and snappy as possible – preferably brief enough to be printed on the back of a business card. ...
  • Make it memorable. ...
  • Make it unique to you. ...
  • Make it realistic. ...
  • Make sure it's current.
19 Sept 2015


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