About Aquinas  
   

Our Mission


Learn about the meaning behind the Aquinas College Seal.

Aquinas College, an inclusive educational community rooted in the Catholic Dominican tradition, provides a liberal arts education with a global perspective, emphasizes career preparation focused on leadership and
service to others, and fosters a commitment to lifelong learning dedicated to the pursuit of truth and the common good.

 

Aquinas College Values
Faith

  • We, as individuals, promote, or at least respect, the distinctive Catholic identity of Aquinas College.
  • We value diversity and respect the freedom of conscience and faith journey of each person.
  • We are committed to the search for Truth.
  • We model and promote ethical behavior.


Learning

  • We are open to change and strive for continuous improvement and innovation.
  • We believe study should lead to action and individual transformation.
  • We promote holistic student development.
  • We believe the study of the liberal arts enriches the human spirit.


Service

  • We lead by example.
  • We treat each other with dignity and respect.
  • We strive to exceed the expectations of those we serve both internally and externally in our community.


Community

  • We value a sense of belonging.
  • We nurture a collaborative environment.
  • We are welcoming and hospitable to all.
  • We strive for a just and sustainable world.
 

Our Vision

Aquinas College is recognized as the exceptional Catholic liberal arts college that prepares individuals for careers of leadership and service in
developing a sustainable and just global community.

 

Our Diversity and Integrity Statements

Diversity - Aquinas College is committed to equality. This statement of the College speaks to this commitment, as do our history and heritage. We believe that diversity is a blessing, which brings a richness of perspectives to our intellectual, cultural, social, and spiritual life. All members of our community - faculty, staff, students - will demonstrate respect for each other regardless of our differences. All of us will be sensitive in our actions, words, and deeds. We will demonstrate these sensitivities in our classrooms, curricula, offices, meeting places, and living environments. We will maintain the diversity of our Board of Trustees, faculty, student body, and staff and appreciate the different gifts each brings to this community regardless of age, gender, race, ethnicity, religion, or disability.

 

Integrity - Aquinas College is rooted in the Dominican traditions of prayer, study, community and service, combined with a deep respect for truth, honesty and integrity. In this spirit, we strive to create an environment in which integrity is prized and practiced. We expect all community members to uphold these values through honesty, fairness, and respect for others.

 

Our Commitment to Sustainability and Economicology

Peter Wege’s principles of Economicology are intertwined with the mission and vision of Aquinas College. Creating a balance between our ecology and the economy is necessary to create a just and sustainable world for the common good. Aquinas College seeks to apply these core principles in a living lab setting, developing students who are agents of change and setting a global standard of lasting educational change.
 

Our Heritage

Founded by the Dominican Sisters of Grand Rapids in 1886, Aquinas has a Catholic heritage in the Dominican tradition of working and serving as outlined in the Dominican Charisms. It is lived out by Aquinas students who volunteer their time and talents in the Grand Rapids community and by those who travel to places such as Oaxaca, Mexico; Appalachia, Kentucky; or any of several other service-learning locations. To learn more about the history of Aquinas College, check out our Heritage & Traditions website.
 

Our Namesake

The College is named for St. Thomas Aquinas, a 13th century Dominican scholar and teacher considered to be one of the most brilliant minds of his time and one of the most influential thinkers in the history of the Catholic church. St. Thomas stressed the importance of having an open mind and open heart and continuously learning from our life experiences. Throughout the years, the Aquinas community has continued to foster a learning environment centered on these principles.
 

Our Programs

The Dominican History within the context of Higher Education dates to the 13th century. Curricula innovation is a hallmark of Aquinas. That educational heritage continues at Aquinas each year as approximately 2,300 students register for classes in both its undergraduate and graduate programs, which encompass 61 majors including signature programs in Sustainable Business and Conductive Education.
 

Our Accreditation and Governance

Accredited by the Higher Learning Commission of the North Central Association since 1946. >More Information

 

Aquinas College is governed by its Board of Trustees in conjunction with the President's Office. Juan Olivarez, Ph.D., began his service as the seventh president of Aquinas College on July 1, 2011.