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Mission, Shared Values and Philosophies


Illustration of a figure raising a flag after climbing to the summit.


Why we exist

To improve people’s lives through learning.

Through our decisions and actions we empower:

  • Students to reach their goals in an equitable and welcoming environment;
  • Employees to thrive and fully use their collective talents, and
  • Our Community to transform and enrich the world.


Illustration of a heart.

Shared Values

What we believe

These values are shared among employees and reflect what we expect from one another to shape our work experience.


students in engineering class lab


We strive to offer the highest level of excellence in our programs and services to achieve our Vision. We use research-based methods to strengthen curriculum and deliver high-quality learning-centered instruction and services.

Student painting a canvas on an easel

Freedom of Inquiry

We believe learning is most engaging and viable when a spirit of free inquiry exists, allowing everyone the freedom to explore new and diverse ideas and to express their interests and attitudes. We strive to create environments where innovation and inquiry flourish.

Two people speaking at table during a board meeting.

Ethical Practices

We are responsible to carry out our work with honesty and integrity. Our Vision, not personal interests, guides our decisions and actions so that they will be enacted out of service to our students and community members.

Professor working with students in a classroom setting


As a public institution, we commit to making the best use of resources. We are transparent in measurement and reporting, seek feedback from others, accept responsibility for our decisions and actions, and continuously improve our practices.

ECC Faculty holding a sign with the letters C4


We are committed to serving students, employees, and community members. The decisions and actions we undertake in carrying out our Vision derive from working cooperatively with all stakeholders.

Student dressed in a cap and gown in a crowd of students at commencement

Holistic Approach

As stewards of people’s learning, we understand their perspectives and we use our insight and compassion to support them through challenging times. We believe in educating and supporting the whole person through a comprehensive approach that addresses the emotional, social, ethical, and academic needs of students, employees, and community members.

Illustration of a magnifying glass.


How we approach our work

These philosophies serve as our ethical compass and the lens through which we look when making decisions.


ECC's president is on stage celebrating an employee's achievement.


Learning is a lifelong process that empowers individuals.

Teacher and student in classroom setting


Equity is ensuring everyone receives what they need to be successful.

Instructor helping students work at a computer.


Diversity is all expressions of humanity.

Students sitting together on the lawn at ECC


Inclusion is valuing what makes us unique.

A student and sitting and talking with an academic advisor


Justice is ensuring our structures and systems honor individual rights.

2023 – 2027 Strategic Plan

Creating the Current Plan

For the first time, our strategic plan was created 100% virtually. This meant the team couldn’t work in a conference room in small table discussions with flip charts and post-it notes. The team had to find new ways to facilitate the group’s participation through the technology of Zoom® break out rooms, Google® docs and sheets, Padlet®, and a fun online tool called Piccles® (pronounced “pickles”).