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The Potsdam Graduate

The Potsdam Faculty believes that an educated person is one who can thrive and provide leadership in our complex, ambiguous and mutable world. Such an individual possesses not only knowledge and skills, but also the commitment to apply them reflectively in order to create a more humane, sustainable and just world.

An educated person is one who aspires to learn throughout life and is committed to the search for truth through free inquiry and open debate. While all aspects of the student experience contribute to such an education, the curriculum is central. Each student?s curriculum is ideally an integrated whole, consisting of three components: the general education program which provides a framework of skills, knowledge and experience for learning; a major that permits disciplined study of a particular body of knowledge; and in most programs of study, electives that allow students to shape learning to individual goals and needs.


Students will demonstrate the ability to:

  • organize thought and communicate in written and oral form.
  • reason analytically, formally, symbolically and quantitatively.
  • solve problems by creative synthesis of knowledge.
  • judge, appraise and evaluate, in matters ethical, aesthetic, empirical and logical.
  • locate, evaluate, and effectively use information.
  • use technology appropriately to solve problems and disseminate ideas.


Students will demonstrate knowledge of:

  • the historical method of investigation, including knowledge of the heritage of Western Civilization and of at least one non-Western culture.
  • fundamental biological and physical concepts.
  • the impact of human activities on the environment.
  • contemporary social institutions, including their underlying values and principles.
  • both historical and contemporary currents in and approaches to literature, arts, and philosophy.
  • a second language and of the culture of speakers of that language.
  • the rights and responsibilities of citizens and the principles of democratic civic engagement.


Students will experience opportunities to:

  • actively engage with the creative process in the arts.
  • explore the way the sciences generate, organize, and verify scientific concepts.
  • participate in physical activities that include instruction emphasizing the importance of life-long health and wellness.
  • serve the campus as well as the wider community.