Leading With Character


Building on qualities that had been promoted since its founding in 1924, Harding University was recognized as the first Campus of Character in October, 2002, by the International Association of Character Cities, an association of the Character Training Institute in Oklahoma City, Okla. This unique designation followed the passage of a resolution by the university's board of trustees, declaring that Harding would do everything possible to promote character on campus and beyond.

Harding is taking a leadership role with its students and community to demonstrate the importance of good character. By working to strengthen character in its students, the university intends to help students make good decisions throughout their lives.


Character is best taught by example. Leaders who model good character influence others to develop good character by recognizing, requiring and emphasizing proper attitudes, words and actions.

In its commitment to the Character First! model, Harding's student services personnel and resident assistants completed the curriculum and are taking leadership roles in the dormitories and on campus, working to resolve conflicts before they have a chance to surface in wrong actions. Their leadership guides others to focus on these character traits as they make daily decisions leading to a high quality of life.

Character Enrichment

Students and teachers around the world have suggested many positive changes that result from emphasis of character in the educational environment. Foremost among them are improvement of comprehension and retention, which results in greater success in relationships and careers. Others include....

  • increased cooperation
  • improved school safety
  • fewer discipline problems
  • positive learning environment
  • higher academic achievement
  • heightened staff unity
  • improved family harmony