Named for environmentalist, nature writer and Sierra Club founder, John Muir, and inspired by his remarkable life, John Muir College of UC San Diego stresses the spirit of individual choice and responsibility within the framework of a welcoming and supportive community. Muir was the second college to be founded at UC San Diego and admitted its first students in 1967. Muir is a special place where generations of students have felt recognized and valued as individuals and experienced a strong sense of belonging within this large research university. The College’s motto, “Celebrating the Independent Spirit,” recognizes both our namesake John Muir and the achievements of our talented and enterprising students and alumni.
Muir’s General Education requirements are the most flexible of all the colleges at UC San Diego so that students can actively shape academic programs best suited to their individual interests and educational goals. Many Muir students take advantage of that flexibility to double major, pursue one or more minors, and to take advantage of opportunities such as education abroad, UC-DC, and the Dartmouth College Exchange Program, which Muir sponsors.
Following John Muir’s example, Muir College encourages awareness of environmental issues and involvement in environmental preservation and sustainability both on and off campus. The College partners actively work with UC San Diego’s Environment and Sustainability Initiative (ESI), the campus Sustainability Coordinator, Green Campus, and other campus organizations to promote environmentally responsible citizenship for the 21st century. The interdisciplinary minor in Environmental Studies was started and continues to flourish at Muir, along with the Film Studies Minor and Critical Gender Studies Major and Minor.
Muir’s flexible academic program and friendly community make it a popular choice for UC San Diego students. Muir students are a diverse group that encompasses all majors and backgrounds and exemplify the highest levels of academic achievement and student involvement. Muir’s founding Provost John Stewart wrote in 1965, “We take as our end the development of mature and responsible individuals who can participate creatively in society. We want our students to have the power to change the environment in which they live.” We aspire for all our students to achieve the same kind of self-directed, varied, and committed life as our namesake John Muir.