Welcome from the Dean


Learning Attributes as a focus for the First-Year Experience

Ithaca College strives to become the standard of excellence for residential comprehensive colleges fostering intellect, creativity, and character in an active, student-centered learning community. Three attributes, embedded in this vision statement for Ithaca College, act as a focus for the incoming class each year. These attributes are “intellect,” “creativity,” and “character.”  Through the components of the First-Year Experience, and other programs on campus during the year, first-year students will read about, discuss and reflect upon issues that relate to intellect, creativity, character, and the development of these traits. 

‘Intellect’ is one’s capacity for understanding, thinking, reasoning, and acquiring knowledge. ‘Creativity’ is the ability to stimulate the imagination to invent and create. ‘Character’ is the complex set of mental and ethical traits marking and often individualizing a person; the stable and distinctive qualities built into an individual's life that determines his/her response regardless of circumstances. As a new student your challenges will present themselves in the form of new ideas, new approaches to problem-solving, new encounters with differences, and a variety of new perspectives requiring analysis, integration and the utilization of your intellect and personal creativity.

We invite you to accept the challenge to reach beyond your current knowledge and take advantage of the many opportunities to learn both inside and outside of the classroom. You will be encouraged to ask questions, read, analyze, synthesize, write, and discuss, utilizing your intellect, creativity, and character to accomplish these intellectual and academic tasks. The FYE at Ithaca College provides a unique opportunity to engage with new ideas and critical reflection, as well as the forum to cultivate the skills for life-long learning and development. All first-year students are encouraged to embrace the First-Year Experience, as it serves as the foundation for what will become their Ithaca Experience!