Mission, Vision, Aspirations, and Values

USF is dedicated to meeting the needs of our diverse student population through a high-quality and highly relevant curriculum and a steadfast spirit of service to local and global communities through the development of strategic partnerships and highly relevant applied research. Our mission, vision, aspirations, and goals inform all aspects of both the strategic planning process and its implementation—reaffirming our commitment to excellence in teaching and learning, research and scholarly activity, community engagement, and equity in diversity and inclusion. Taken together, they serve as our blueprint for driving strategic focus and institutional commitments.


Led by outstanding faculty and professional staff, the University of South Florida conducts innovative scholarship, creative activity, and basic and translational research, and delivers a world-class educational experience promoting the success of our talented and diverse undergraduate, graduate, and professional students. As a public metropolitan research university, USF, in partnership with our communities, serves the people of Florida, the nation, and the world by fostering intellectual inquiry and outcomes that positively shape the future—regionally, nationally, and globally.


The University of South Florida is driven by a commitment to excellence in teaching and learning, research and scholarship, and creative works and innovation. Changing the world through educating leaders in a diverse, inclusive environment and developing knowledge and practice to address critical challenges, USF will be recognized within the ranks of the nation’s top public research universities.


USF has long been committed to reaching ever-higher levels of excellence in service of its surrounding communities and to attract top students, faculty, and staff. This, in turn, leads to increased academic and research productivity, which fuels greater economic impact and societal contributions, further strengthening USF’s reputation and value as a community asset.

Our aspirations for the future are not the goals in and of themselves, but rather milestones in our continued Pursuit of Excellence and will further propel USF on its remarkable trajectory toward achieving a Top-25 U.S. News & World Report public ranking. Further indicators of USF’s collective success include national and global rankings as one of the world’s top universities and advancement towards eligibility for Association of American Universities (AAU) membership.


USF is committed to the core values of Inquiry, Innovation, Integrity, and Inclusion as:

Inquiry through

  • High-quality, multidisciplinary education, and excellence in teaching and learning.
  • High-impact scholarship, research, and creative pursuits.
  • Success and achievement of its students, faculty, staff, and alumni.
  • Collegiality, collaboration, academic freedom, viewpoint diversity, and an institutional commitment to the open exchange of ideas, divergent opinions and philosophies, rigorous debate, grounded in the principles of civil discourse, and professional responsibility. This value is in alignment with the Board of Governors Statement of Free Expression and commitment to civil discourse.

Innovation through

  • Exploration of new technologies to create efficiencies and solve problems.
  • A culture of learning, growth, entrepreneurial spirit, and partnerships.
  • First-class administrative and physical infrastructure to support the university’s education and research mission.
  • An agile, flexible, and proactive multi-campus community that develops curricula and programs to meet rapidly changing community and global needs.

Integrity through

  • Shared governance within all components of the institution.
  • Transparency and accountability of the university’s operations.
  • Affordable and accessible education for all.
  • Social, economic, and environmental sustainability at the local and global levels.

Inclusion through

  • Diversity of students, faculty, and staff in safe campus environments.
  • Respect and recognition of each individual through a commitment to justice, equity, and anti-racism.
  • Community engagement and public service.
  • A welcoming campus life with broad academic, cultural, and athletic opportunities.