The beginnings of SNDT Women’s University date back to 1896 when Maharshi Karve, the intrepid social reformer began to take up the cause of widows and other helpless women. Due to social customs, ignorance and societal inhibitions, education of women was not encouraged. Professor Karve strongly felt that the wide gulf between the social status of men and women must be bridged and that women should be on equal terms with men regarding the affairs at home, the city and the nation. Over the decades, the mission to educate women has been conscientiously reviewed, re-examined and redefined for relevance based on the following objectives.

1. To provide education to girls and women whose access to it is limited or poor. This includes those who are located in remote areas, those who are bound by orthodox and societal inhibitions, those whose education has been cut short for various reasons and those who are restricted by financial constraints.
2. To provide courses so as to ensure that women gain entry into fields from which they have been traditionally excluded.
3. To identify where and what kind of new job opportunities are appearing in the course of the ongoing industrialisation and modernisation of the country.
4. To consciously equip students to function as responsible and self-confident citizens.
5. To advance the quality of education for women.