Culture & Climate


Culture is a system of shared assumptions, values, and beliefs that govern how people behave and move within groups and/or organizations.  It consists of patterns of behavior (both explicit and implicit), cultural symbols, norms, and traditions.

What are aspects of culture at GVSU? 

  • Louie the Lasker 
  • Music 
  • Gatherings at the Cook Carillon Tower 
  • Campus Life Night 
  • Reverend Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. campus celebration 
  • Grand Valley President’s Ball 


Climate is different than culture.  It is the atmosphere in an institution that prevails and reflects how people with varying identities feel in the environment. It can also be described as the mood or atmosphere, like the air we breathe.

We can’t know climate by just looking at people, we have to be intentional in asking people how they experience GVSU to better understand if they feel a “sense of belonging”. Every student plays a role in creating and maintaining a climate that is equitable and inclusive. Our everyday behaviors and attitudes matter a great deal, as they can communicate to people that they are welcome and belong.

GVSU Campus Climate Survey