Dear friends,
As they say, you can’t move forward without knowing where you’ve been.

This March, we took some time to recognize those who helped build our history through our first-ever reunion for Joplin Junior College (JJC) graduates. JJC alumni got a look at the college’s former home at Eighth and Wall, and enjoyed reminiscing about their college days. It was a wonderful evening.

My hope is for all our alumni to stay connected to Missouri Southern for life. We want you to read our publications, follow us online, come to our events and continue to be an active member of the Lion family throughout your lifetime. I’m pleased to see our connections growing stronger with alumni, and to see our Lion community growing as our enrollment continues to increase.

And while these are great things to celebrate, there are still challenges facing our institution. Most of you have already heard about the deep cuts to state appropriations for higher education in Missouri, but I’ll bet you didn’t know that the withholdings proposed earlier this year would take us back to state funding levels of 2008. Virtually everything costs more in 2017 that in 2008, and we are serving many more students than a decade ago. Currently, state appropriations account for only 31 percent of our current revenue… and unfortunately
it is headed south.

Accordingly, we have reduced staffing, eliminated several programs and student activities, curtailed vitally needed building expansions, and suspended valuable partnerships with other universities. It’s not easy to do more with less, and usually it’s impossible.

So, let me take just a moment to remind you of how important you are to the future of Missouri Southern. Simply, the generous and faithful support you provide helps make up for the shortfall caused by shrinking state support – and we need your help to keep your University strong.

By making a gift to Missouri Southern, you can help a young person get a start in the world. You can help enhance our programs and assist deserving students during this important time in their development. And, you can very deservedly feel the Lion Pride that we all share when we pull together as a family.

The work we do today, empowered by your gifts, will have a huge payoff tomorrow and for generations to come. So, as you enjoy this edition of Crossroads, please consider joining us in this important work by making a donation to the Missouri Southern Foundation.

We are all MSSU Lions – proud, confident and strong.

Alan D. Marble, Ph.D.
President, Missouri Southern