Feb. 12, 2010

Legislators prepare to hear legislation to equalize Access Missouri awards

Questions about the fairness of the Access Missouri need-based scholarship program have prompted two bills to be filed and led to an extensive discussion by the state’s Coordinating Board for Higher Education this week. At issue is the current policy to provide up to $4,600 for students attending private institutions and $2,150 to students attending public four-year institutions. Public institutions, including the University of Missouri System, have argued that students should receive equal awards regardless of whether they choose a public or private four-year school.

The Senate Education Committee will hear SB784 sponsored by Sens. Kurt Schaefer (R-Columbia) and David Pearce (R-Warrensburg) Feb. 17. The bill would equalize award levels at $2,850 for all four-year students beginning in 2014. Current Access recipients would continue to receive the same award they currently receive. A similar bill, HB1812, has been filed in the House by Rep. Gayle Kingery (R-Poplar Bluff), and is expected to be referred soon to the House Higher Education Committee.

Several organizations are supporting the legislation, including the Council on Public Higher Education, the Mizzou Alumni Association, the Mizzou Flagship Council, the Associated Students of the University of Missouri, and several other student and alumni organizations across the state.
The Coordinating Board for Higher Education voted 5-1 to oppose the Access legislation.

Higher education committee hears bill to lower GPA requirement for Access renewal

Another Access Missouri-related bill had a hearing this week before the House Higher Education Committee. HB1473, sponsored by Rep. Mike Thomson (R-Maryville) would reduce the GPA required for renewal of Access awards from 2.5 to 2.0 during the first two years of undergraduate education. Thomson argued that a large number of students have a GPA between 2.0 and 2.5 during the first year or two of school and the current policy cuts out their funding after one semester.

Missouri S&T Vice Provost for Enrollment Management Jay Goff testified in support of the legislation, saying 600 University of Missouri students lost their Access scholarships last year because of a GPA between 2.0 and 2.5. Most of those students would otherwise have continued with the scholarship, he said.


From left, Rep. Gayle Kingery (R-Poplar Bluff), Chris Koukola, assistant to the chancellor for University Affairs at MU, and MU Chancellor Brady Deaton at the Geyer reception.

Mizzou Alumni Association honors Kingery, Koukola at Geyer Awards reception

The Mizzou Alumni Association presented 2009 Geyer Awards for Public Service to Higher Education to Rep. Gayle Kingery (R-Poplar Bluff) and Chris Koukola, assistant to the MU chancellor for University Affairs during a reception at the Governor’s Mansion Feb. 8. The award, in honor of Henry S. Geyer who sponsored the original legislation establishing the University of Missouri in 1839, is given each year to an elected official and a citizen for their support of the University of Missouri. Legislators and alumni leaders from across the state attended the reception.


(From left) UMKC Pharmacy Department Chair Steven Stoner, UMKC awardee Dr. Cameron Lindsey, and UM System President Gary Forsee pose for pictures following the awards. For more photos, click here.

Four university faculty receive Governor’s Award for Excellence in Education

Four faculty members from the University of Missouri System received the 2010 Governor’s Award for Excellence in Education during a luncheon Feb. 10 at Lincoln University in Jefferson City. Faculty members at Missouri’s public four-year colleges and universities were recognized for their excellence in challenging and motivating Missouri students to reach their maximum potential.
UM recipients included Dr. John E. Adams, University of Missouri-Columbia; Dr. James A. Drallmeier, Missouri University of Science and Technology; Dr. Cameron Lindsey, University of Missouri-Kansas City; and Dr. James E. Henry, University of Missouri-St. Louis.

MU Extension annual report illustrates wide reach of land-grant mission

The 2009 MU Extension annual report illustrates Extension’s mission “to improve people’s lives, communities and the economy by providing relevant, responsive, and reliable research-based education.”

The report highlights several extension programs, including firefighter training, profitability techniques for Missouri farmers, life enrichment for senior citizens, technical assistance and research-based education for small business owners and managers, and science-based 4-H programs.

Legislative Day March 2

Make plans now to join friends, alumni and supporters of the University of Missouri for the 36th Annual University of Missouri Legislative Day scheduled for March 2. Highlights include capital visits beginning at 8 a.m., displays in the 3rd floor rotunda featuring university programs, and a rally in the 1st Floor Rotunda at 9:30 a.m. Visits continue through the rest of the day until 2 p.m.

This year, Legislative Day coincides with the governor’s math, engineering, technology and science (METS) week and campus displays on the 3rd floor rotunda will highlight these areas.

Visit http://umurl.us/lAj to register for Legislative Day or for more details.

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