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University of Missouri

Shu Yu Hsu analyzes a wastewater sample to determine its coroanvirus concentration at the lab where she works University of Missouri.
Marc Johnson | University of Missouri

Missouri health and environmental officials will soon test wastewater statewide to determine where and when coronavirus outbreaks could occur. 

Researchers have been testing wastewater for the coronavirus at several sites in St. Louis and Springfield since late May and are expanding the program to 64 more sites statewide starting this week.

Wastewater contains genetic remnants of the coronavirus. Monitoring sewage will allow state and local health departments to know which communities could be susceptible to a large outbreak before many residents start showing symptoms, said Marc Johnson, a molecular biologist and professor at the University of Missouri.

As protesters call to remove Confederate statues and symbols across the nation, a new study finds that Missouri has been one of the most responsive states to their demands in recent years.

Public information website BeenVerified says Missouri is removing its Confederate monuments at the fifth fastest rate in the country, following behind Maryland, California, and Oklahoma.

Students cross Grand Boulevard on St. Louis University's campus Tuesday, Nov. 13, 2018.
File Photo | David Kovaluk | St. Louis Public Radio

Universities in the St. Louis region are releasing plans to return students back to campus this fall, but they come with a warning.

School administrators say they are prepared to shift instruction online and send students home like they did this spring if coronavirus cases again spike during the fall semester. Most plan to begin the school year with in-person learning while implementing social distancing measures on campus. 

The columns at the University of Missouri-Columbia.
St. Louis Public Radio file photo

Four years ago, Dan Kolde sued the University of Missouri. His clients, a California-based nonprofit called the Beagle Freedom Project, had sought to obtain records about the dogs and cats the university was using for research. 

Those records were indisputably open to the public under Missouri’s Sunshine Law. What fell into dispute was the cost. The Beagle Freedom Project had made their request as narrow as possible, asking only for records the university was required to maintain for federal inspectors. Still, the university announced it needed $82,222 from the nonprofit to produce them.  

Golfers at the Missouri Bluffs Golf Club played a game on April 23, 2020, near the development site for the housing development in St. Charles.
David Kovaluk | St. Louis Public Radio

After years of debate and delays, construction has begun on the Missouri Bluffs housing development in St. Charles County.

The development will include 221 residences, located about a mile from Interstate 40 on land overlooking the Katy Trail. The St. Charles County Council voted last September to approve the project, which has faced criticism from residents, environmental groups and the county’s planning and zoning commission.

Friday is the deadline for U.S.-China trade talks. If they fail and China's 25-percent tariff on soybeans goes into effect, Missouri farmers will feel the impact.
jasonippolito | Flickr

ROLLA — The economic downturn following the spread of the coronavirus in the U.S. has hurt agriculture in the short term but is also providing opportunities for long-term gains.

Commodity prices are down again this month, following a trend that has been going on for more than five years. In addition, China’s promises to buy $36 billion in U.S. crops this year and $43 billion next year may not come to fruition.

Charles Baron, co-founder of Farmers Business Network, an online farm information and consulting service, said historically low interest rates are another outcome of the downturn, and that could help farmers.

On any given weekday, University of Missouri student Jack Hale is working six to eight hours and dashing to class in between. 

“I wake up a little after five and I do not stop until 11 p.m. most days,” Hale says. Between a full load of classes and two jobs taking up nearly 40 hours a week, he barely gets enough sleep.

Doctoral students in psychology at the University of Missouri will be able to learn how to better treat and prevent addiction thanks to a $1.2 million grant from the federal government.

The funds from the Department of Health and Human Services will pay for 21 new psychology internships in areas that lack health services, more than doubling the department’s current positions.

“This will enable us to give them a little something extra,” said Laura Schopp, chair of the university’s health psychology department. “Any psychologist who is dealing with these chronic health conditions is going to come up against substance use disorders and, particularly, opioid use disorders.”

On Chess: Mizzou Hosts Its First Chess Tournament

Oct 10, 2019
Mizzou fielded its new team comprised of woman grandmaster Gulrukbegim Tokhirjonova, three grandmasters and a newly minted national master in Oct. 2019.
University of Missouri Chess Team

The University of Missouri entered the world of competitive collegiate chess at the beginning of this year, announcing the inception of its inaugural chess program under the banner of its College of Arts & Science.

One of the program’s main goals is to provide opportunities for its players to train and compete at the most challenging levels, while maintaining high academic standards. 

Dan Burkhardt of the Katy Land Trust voiced concerns over the proposed Missouri Bluffs Development during a St. Charles Planning and Zoning Commission meeting on July 17, 2019.
Shahla Farzan | St. Louis Public Radio

Updated Oct. 1 with St. Charles County Council's final approval of proposal

The St. Charles County Council voted 5-1 on Monday night approving a controversial housing project near the Katy Trail.

The county’s planning and zoning commission had twice rejected the proposal to build more than 200 homes on bluffs above the Missouri River. The council needed five votes to override that rejection.

There's a serious teacher shortage in Kansas City and across the country, as fewer people pursue a career that often involves low pay, high stress and lack of community support.

Missouri’s teaching colleges are battling that trend, trying new strategies to attract students pursuing education degrees and to answer a vital need for quality instructors in every classroom.

peter.a photography | Flickr

The Missouri Department of Health and Senior Services said it will distribute 338 licenses to grow and sell medical marijuana. The number is far less than the 510 hopefuls who have already paid application fees with hopes of receiving a license.

These licenses are for different aspects of the medical marijuana pipeline: 60 to cultivate marijuana, 192 to dispense and 86 to manufacture marijuana-infused products.

Even though the number of licenses to be issued is the minimum of what the law allows, a report from University of Missouri economists indicates that might be too much based on demand in other states with similar laws.

The University of Missouri's football, baseball, and softball teams will be banned from the 2019 postseason as part of sanctions handed down by the NCAA on Thursday.

The NCAA is sanctioning the University of Missouri's football, softball and baseball teams after a tutor violated the organization's rules for academic conduct.

An NCAA report released Thursday says a tutor completed work — including homework assignments, quizzes and even an entire class — for a dozen University of Missouri student-athletes.

As a result, all three programs are getting three years of probation and a one-year postseason ban. This means the football team will not be eligible for a bowl game next school year.

The four campuses of the University of Missouri System are seeing an increase in requests for student counseling and other mental health services and are working together to meet the demand.

Chris Sullivan, who oversees counseling services at the University of Missouri-St. Louis, said the increase is part of a national trend as students face rising pressure ranging from stress over finances to trying to succeed in a new environment.

Students head to class at Missouri S&T, one of the campuses that are part of a plan to increase enrollment and improve graduation rates. November 2018
Sam O'Keefe | Missouri S&T

Three University of Missouri campuses are part of a national program looking to increase college access for minorities and lower income students and increase their graduation rates.

The University of Missouri-Columbia, Missouri University of Science and Technology in Rolla and the University of Missouri-Kansas City are participating in the project. The Association of Public Land-grant Universities has assembled 130 schools around the country to address the issues of college costs, barriers to enrollment and graduation rates of students who start degree programs.

Marcus Wilson, the executive director for the Monsanto YMCA, gathers with players in their prayer circle. On Saturdays, Wilson allows players to play basketball for free to allow the players a safe space away from violence.
Ryan Delaney | St. Louis Public Radio

College basketball coaches from across Missouri are coming together to discuss the importance of leadership and how they recruit incoming student athletes, just in time for the new school year.

These issues are among several topics that will be discussed at the first annual Coaches Luncheon on Aug. 27, where regional NCAA Division I basketball coaches will  discuss the issues and strengths they see in both students and coaches.

This article first appeared in the St. Louis Beacon, Nov. 17, 2011 - Only 146 years after Lee's surrender at Appomattox Courthouse, Missouri has finally decided to take a side in the Civil War. We've elected to join the Confederacy.

Former University of Missouri football coach Gary Pinkel joined St. Louis on the Air host Don Marsh
Alex Heuer | St. Louis Public Radio

The year 2015 was a busy and challenging one for former University of Missouri football coach Gary Pinkel.

In April, the winningest football coach in school history was awarded a contract extension that would have kept him with the university through 2021 with a salary in excess of $4 million per year.

Courtesy of the University of Missouri-St. Louis

Updated at 5 p.m. with UM System tuition proposal — The University of Missouri-St. Louis is on pace to close its $15 million dollar budget deficit ahead of schedule.

UMSL’s top financial officer told administrators this week that the school should finish the fiscal year, which ends June 30, about $500,000 in the black instead of being $3.6 million over budget.

Daniel Doerr, University of Missouri-St. Louis' assistant director for international studies, advises students about the impacts of President Donald Trump's travel ban at a forum Tuesday, Jan. 31.
Ryan Delaney | St. Louis Public Radio

Updated, Jan. 31 7:10 p.m. with advice from University of Missouri-St. Louis officials: 

Local colleges are advising all international students to avoid leaving the country amid President Donald Trump's executive order barring entry to travelers from seven countries.

University of Missouri students protest a series of racist incidents on the Columbia campus in this photo from Nov. 9, 2015.
Bram Sable-Smith | KBIA

The University of Missouri should emphasize diversity in its recruitment, train professors in the importance of diversity in their courses and increase outreach to improve diversity among faculty and staff, a systemwide task force recommended on Wednesday.

Those proposals were among priority items included in the task force’s report. It was responding to a comprehensive audit of diversity, equity and inclusion practices at the university conducted by the consulting firm IBIS.

Zora Mulligan, Missouri's Commissioner for Higher Education, has been in the position since August.
Kelly Moffitt | St. Louis Public Radio

Zora Mulligan has been on the job as Missouri’s Commissioner of Higher Education for less than four months. But before she stepped into those shoes, she served as the University of Missouri System’s Chief of Staff during the 2015-2016 protests at Mizzou, which grasped the attention of the entire nation.

Did such exposure hurt the UM System as a whole?

Millennium Student Center at UMSL
File: Dale Singer | St. Louis Public Radio

Updated Oct. 31 at 3:05 p.m. with background — Nearly one year after former President Tim Wolfe stepped down amid racial unrest in Columbia, the University of Missouri system plans to introduce his successor on Wednesday.

The St. Louis Post-Dispatch reported that the new president will be Mun Y. Choi, the provost at the University of Connecticut.

Unlike the university’s last two presidents, Wolfe and Gary Forsee, Choi comes to the University of Missouri from an academic background.

He joined the mechanical engineering department at Connecticut in 2008, after serving on the faculty at the University of Illinois from 1994 to 2000 and at Drexel University starting in 2000. He received his B.S. from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign in 1987 and M.A. and Ph.D. in Mechanical & Aerospace Engineering from Princeton University.

(via Flickr/Adam Procter)

After lengthy fly-in sessions in St. Louis and Kansas City to meet prospective candidates and narrow the list, the head of the University of Missouri Board of Curators will say only that the search for a new system president “is going well.”

Pam Henrickson refrained from giving any more specific information after the curators met at the university’s Kansas City campus on Friday.

Interim President Mike Middleton addresses the University of Missouri Board of Curators
Dale Singer | St. Louis Public Radio

The interim president of the University of Missouri system said that even as memories of last fall’s racial protests in Columbia persist, the school continues to perform valuable services for the state.

But the only African-American member of the university’s Board of Curators wants to make sure that the system’s new emphasis on diversity results in action, not just talk.

The columns at the University of Missouri-Columbia.
St. Louis Public Radio file photo

A former Missouri state representative is suing the University of Missouri and Joshua Hawley, a Republican candidate for attorney general, over delays by the university in responding to a wide-ranging request for emails and other documents.

Millennium Student Center at UMSL
File: Dale Singer | St. Louis Public Radio

Tuition at the University of Missouri’s four campuses will remain flat this fall for in-state undergraduate students.

New UM diversity officer Kevin McDonald
University of Missouri

Monday’s St. Louis on the Air featured two exciting segments. First, we aired the season two premiere of the St. Louis Public Radio podcast We Live Here. Want to stay up-to-date on the podcast? Check out its new website here.

Following the premiere, the University of Missouri System’s newly named, first-ever chief diversity, equity and inclusion officer, Kevin McDonald, joined us to discuss some of the issues that We Live Here delves into as well as his plans for the new role. You can read about McDonald’s background here.

Ari Cohn, a senior program officer with the Foundation for Individual Rights in Education (FIRE).
Kelly Moffitt | St. Louis Public Radio

The saga of Melissa Click is one so widely-known that it is sure to be recorded in the great books of higher ed lore. Click, in the fall of 2015, became famous for “calling for some muscle” to keep a reporter from entering a “media-free” zone on public property where Mizzou’s Concerned Student 1950 protesters were encamped. As a writer in The Atlantic pointed out, “If the case of Melissa Click were a law professor’s hypothetical, it’d be a great one.”

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