Ambassadors
Ambassadors at Southwestern University

Champions of Pirate Pride

Southwestern University Ambassadors are champions of the University. They include students, parents, alumni, faculty, staff, trustees, board members, and friends who promote the virtues and benefits of the Southwestern Experience.

Southwestern University Ambassadors represent the most emphatic and credible voice for the University and when we all sing from the same sheet of music that voice becomes much louder and more effective. A consistent message emphasizes our unity, highlights our benefits and, over time, creates a powerful and dynamic brand persona.

This site will equip you with all you need to go forward and champion the Southwestern Experience. If you require additional support, please contact the SU Marketing and Communications Department at 512.863.1771 or email sucommunications@southwestern.edu.

The Southwestern Experience

Key Messaging

What makes the Southwestern Experience so different? Why are these differences so important to the future of higher education and the success of our graduates? These are the overarching questions we answer in the key messaging portion of our brand positioning material. Here, you’ll find short descriptions of the major characteristics and programs that help set Southwestern University apart.

Our Primary Point of Difference

At Southwestern University, you are not simply the passive consumer of current knowledge; you are an active participant in the creation of new knowledge. The Southwestern Experience is designed to develop the intellectual practices necessary to enhance your ability to explore regions of original thought and creative expression.

The world is changing—and at an accelerating pace. In a 21st-century career, you will be required to advance the frontiers of knowledge, adapt quickly to change, problem-solve new and complex challenges, and anticipate what’s next.

We’ve created an experience that prepares you for these new realities. Combining our innovative curriculum, the development of modern ways of thinking, and real-world experience, SU will equip you with the skills required to adapt, create, collaborate, and view challenges from multiple perspectives. These customized skills represent a valuable piece of a much broader, more relevant education for the tomorrow that awaits you.

Support Points

Our primary point of difference is a promise we make to potential students and their parents. And a promise, of course, is only good if it is kept. This is why real and tangible evidence of how we are paying off our claim of a much broader, more relevant education for tomorrow is vital to our messaging.

Paideia

Paideia is a Greek word referring to the education of an ideal citizen well versed in the arts, the humanities, and the social and natural sciences and distinguished by an enlightened outlook born of the ability to see things from multiple perspectives.

You will learn to find connections across majors, between disciplines, and in relation to your experiences outside the classroom. Paideia helps create a powerful intellectual practice, empowering you to think in broader, more collaborative, and more original ways. You will graduate with a cultivated curiosity and the desire to learn, explore, and create change — in your careers and in life.


High-Impact Learning Experiences

At Southwestern, high-impact experiences are immersive opportunities that position our graduates for active, meaningful lives of engagement and achievement. Through transformative internships, community-engaged learning, study abroad and study away, and collaborative student–faculty research, students gain independence and progressive mastery of new competencies and skills. Students learn to think more effectively about their understanding of the world, making connections across subjects, borders, economic systems, and varying ways of life. These life-changing experiences last a lifetime and are the hallmark of today’s Southwestern Experience.


Undergraduate Research

Undergraduate research at Southwestern goes well beyond the library stacks or the lab bench. Alongside faculty, you will develop authentic, previously unexplored questions and test your own hypotheses, making original contributions to your field of study. Collaborating with faculty and peers, our students regularly present at professional conferences and even coauthor publications. These experiences hone the intellectual practice of problem-solving and provide an enduring framework for innovation and the creation of new knowledge. Moreover, Southwestern’s undergraduates develop lasting friendships with their fellow researchers and strong bonds with their professors, a key element of our commitment to supporting personal growth.


Innovative Curriculum

    Because each student’s Southwestern Experience is personalized, no two paths look exactly the same. The new Southwestern curriculum is broken into three distinct parts:
  1. The first part of the curriculum consists of taking at least one course in each of four main areas: the Humanities, Fine Arts, Social Sciences, and Natural Sciences (including Mathematics & Computer Science). You will then “double up” and take at least one more in two of those areas.
  2. The next area focuses on in-depth courses related to your “intellectual home,” or major. But you will approach that deep and meaningful learning from a much broader perspective enhanced by other disciplines.
  3. The final area of the updated curriculum allows you the freedom to explore your growing interests or change your mind and switch majors while still graduating in four years. You might decide to double major, or you might pursue two minors. Most students also participate in an internship, research project, study-abroad semester, or other high-impact experience during their time at Southwestern.

Active Learning

Our commitment to inquiry-based learning creates a more active classroom with fewer lectures and more hands-on engagement. Active learning is a more dynamic approach to the classroom setting, enabling you to participate more in your own education while greatly improving your retention of what you’ve learned.

The process is organic: as children, we ask questions to understand and make sense of our world. Likewise, students are often given a question, problem, or scenario. While constantly and methodically interrogating diverse solutions, you will invent new answers and new knowledge, thereby making greater meaning of your academic experience. By enhancing your ability to understand, interpret, and evaluate information, SU will inspire your lifelong intellectual curiosity.


Interconnected Learning

Interconnected learning at Southwestern University is designed to help you see the relevance of and relationship between courses and disciplines. You will discover how different fields of knowledge interrelate and learn to unify subjects rather than view them as separate and distinct areas of thought.

Academic discovery, like self-discovery, often lies outside traditional compartmental structures. By bringing together knowledge, concepts, and methods from across multiple fields, you will begin to develop a holistic view and a new, integrated approach to learning.


Diverse Perspectives

At Southwestern, we believe that diversity is more than just numbers. We believe that diversity expands our worldliness, enhances our social development, increases our knowledge base, and better prepares us for collaboration in a global society. Diversity among our students, staff, and faculty leads to a diversity of thought as well as a genuine commitment to creating an inclusive environment that is equally welcoming to all. More than one-third of Southwestern students come from underrepresented groups, and over 40% of our students broaden their perspective by studying abroad in Europe, South Africa, and Asia.


Mosaic: Educating the Whole Person

At Southwestern, we encourage you to choose mindfully from among the broad variety of opportunities to engage. There’s an ideal balance, different for each student, among academics, team and organization membership, work, and downtime. By engaging with intention and reflecting on the value of each component of your involvement, you can find your perfect balance.

We call this coordinated approach to the cocurricular experience Mosaic to reflect the collection of meaningful moments, relationships, learning, and development that make up your experience in college—your personal mosaic.

Southwestern by the Numbers
  • 91%
    of SU graduates graduate in four years.
  • 91%
    of our students are employed or accepted to graduate or professional school with nine months of graduating.
  • 75%
    of Southwestern students that apply to medical schools are accepted, a rate three times the national average.
  • 40%
    of students participate in student-faculty research.
  • 11:1
    average student-to-faculty ratio.
  • 2.5
    the average number of high-impact intellectual experiences (study abroad, community-engaged learning, internships, or student-faculty research) a student will engage in.
  • 38%
    of SU students volunteer.
  • 60%
    of SU students participate annually in a recreation sports program.
FELLOWSHIPS
19 Fulbright Scholars  
8 Andrews Fellows *
28 Sumners Fellows *
10 Kemper Scholars *
1 National Science Foundation *
2 Gilman Scholars *
3 Public Policy Scholars *
*Since 2007
Rankings
#1 undergraduate liberal arts and sciences college in Texas in the Grateful Graduates Index of “happiest, most successful alumni” Forbes
#1 Best Career Services in Texas, #7 in the U.S. The Princeton Review
#1 liberal arts university in Texas (for social mobility, research, and service) Washington Monthly
#1 Making an Impact Schools in Texas, #3 in the U.S. The Princeton Review
#1 liberal arts university in Texas for Best College Value Kiplinger’s Personal Finance
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