Culver Mission

A street sign for Academy road in Culver, Indiana.

Culver educates its students for leadership and responsible citizenship in society by developing and nurturing the whole individual – mind, spirit, and body – through an integrated curriculum that emphasizes the cultivation of character.

Culver is committed to the intellectual growth of all members of its community through a demanding curriculum that prepares students for success in higher education. Culver’s curriculum emphasizes critical thinking, problem solving, writing, research, artistic expression, and foreign language proficiency through innovative teaching methods and technologically rich classrooms. Equally important is the cultivation of virtues that develops a lifelong love of learning and a commitment to the responsible stewardship of knowledge.

Character development is essential to the Culver mission. For over a century, the foundation of the Culver model has been an education in the classical virtues of wisdom, courage, moderation, and justice. Given that habits of mind, spirit, and body develop slowly, an education in the virtues requires understanding, self-discipline, and practice. All aspects of Culver’s academic, residential, extracurricular, and athletic curricula are designed to provide students with opportunities for individual growth within a carefully structured environment and provide opportunities for them to begin the difficult task of developing lifelong habits.

At Culver, leadership training is both an end in itself and the means by which students develop a sense of social responsibility. Culver Military Academy is organized around its own distinctive military system of cadet leadership, while Culver Girls Academy is modeled on a prefect system. With these distinctive systems, Culver’s students enjoy the benefits of equal leadership development opportunities in their separate residential programs, while sharing in the advantages of a coeducational program in most other areas of school life. Through the enactment of leadership ideals made possible in and through these systems, they develop confidence in their abilities to complete difficult and challenging tasks, as well as habits of inquiry and self-discipline. 

Culver is committed to the spiritual development of its students. To encourage students to take the pursuit of spiritual truth seriously, Culver provides a variety of opportunities for the exploration and expression of religious faith. To this end, every student participates in a school chapel service or similar faith activity. While Culver’s religious heritage is rooted in the Judeo-Christian tradition, we recognize and celebrate the rich diversity of faith and practice found among our students. The fruits of the cultivation of the spirit – a regard for the beauty of the world, a reverence for the gift of life, and a recognition of the limits of our understanding – are important components of a virtuous life.

Culver’s programs in the visual and performing arts promote both aesthetic literacy and artistic practice. The arts are the common language of humanity and their study can lead to a deeper understanding of life and respect for cultural diversity. Emphasizing both theory and practice, Culver’s arts programs contribute to the intellectual and personal development characteristic of an integrated approach to education. 

Culver’s athletic, wellness, and physical education programs are an integral part of curriculum. Participation affords a significant opportunity for the development of the virtues associated with personal integrity. While we encourage individual and team excellence, Culver’s rich and varied programs are designed to present students of all skill and experience levels with opportunities to develop both a lifelong interest in sports and a lifelong regard for good sportsmanship. Culver’s wellness and residential life curricula emphasize sound decision-making through programs that include fitness, nutrition, and respect for the body.