Student Curator

The University of Missouri Board Of Curators is composed of nine voting Curators and one non-voting Student Representative.   The Board acts as the governing body for the University of Missouri System and makes decisions regarding tuition, new student programs, and other important issues that affect the campuses. Each Curator represents one congressional district, however, with the 2010 redistricting and Missouri’s loss of a congressional district, a “curator at large” now results in one district being represented by two curators.  The Associated Students of the University of Missouri (ASUM) supports allowing the Student Representative to vote in order to represent out-of-state, international, and in-state students on the Board while also doing away with the over-representation issue created by the “curator at large” position.

Currently, the students do not have a voice in the decision making process on issues that affect the students directly. A voting Student Curator would allow the students to voice their ideas and provide real input on decisions that directly impact the System’s main purpose, the education of students.

The current selection process for the non-voting Student Representative is rigorous and requires Gubernatorial and Senate approval. Prior to this approval, respective campus staff along with student representatives interview and narrow down the field to the three best-qualified students to be submitted to the Governor. The Governor then makes the appointment and the student goes up before the Missouri Senate for approval. The Student Representative rotates between all four campuses every two years.

Logistically, giving the student a vote would fix the problem of over representation from a “curator at large”.  The Board would still have 9 voting members.  ASUM has pushed legislation that requires the Student Curator to be a graduate student, and legislation that allows the student to be an undergraduate student over the years.  The legislative leadership of ASUM will determine which form of the legislation will be most supported in Jefferson City and make an informed decision once session has started.

Thirty-nine other states have universities with a voting Student Curator on their governing board and now is the time for Missouri to give students a deserved voice.  The issue of a voting Student Curator has been a long-standing priority of ASUM and it is often the issue that legislators identify with the organization.  ASUM has lobbied for a voting Student Curator every year since 1975.   In 2008, legislation in support of a voting Student Curator passed the Missouri House and Senate, but was vetoed by Governor Blunt.

A voting Student Curator is increasingly imperative as student tuition continues to account for a higher percentage of the UM-System’s total revenue. The student can provide an important first-hand experience at the current UM System that other members of the board do not have.

The University of Missouri was created first and foremost to educate students, but without a voting Student Curator, the Board of Curators lacks the true voice of the students.


  • Currently, we have a Student Representative on the Board of Curators that does not have a vote
  • ASUM advocates for a full-voting rights Student Curator that would rotate between the four campuses every two years
  • A Student Curator eliminates the need of the “at-large” member on the Board
  • Allows for representation for out-of-state and international students
  • Will not be allowed to vote on the hiring or firing of personnel




  • ASUM has filed legislation to afford voting rights to the Student Representative to the University of Missouri Board of Curators every year since 1975.
  • Legislation supporting a voting Student Curator passed the MO House of Representatives and MO Senate in 2008, but was ultimately vetoed by the Governor.
  • Watch former ASUM Legislative Director, Allyson Walker, testify on behalf of the Student Curator bill in 2008.