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Interim President Cliff Smart Gives State of the University Address

Interim Provost Frank Einhellig and Interim President Cliff Smart, Credit: Shane Franklin

Every year, the president of Missouri State University gives the State of the University Address--that’s an update on where the university has made progress, and what it plans to accomplish in the coming year. This year,  Interim President Cliff Smart delivered the address. KSMU’s Shane Franklin was there, and brings us this story

Smart addressed a large gathering of students, faculty, and community members in the theater of Plaster Student Union on MSU’s campus. The theatre reached near maximum capacity, with many people standing in the back just to hear the annual address.

The topic of this year’s speech was “Building on Success.” Smart said that his perception of last year was that it was a success.

“At a university as we all know, building takes time, sometimes a long time, and that’s okay. Building something meaningful requires consensus, and consensus on difficult issues is rarely obtained quickly.”

He addressed the topic of enrollment, which is a priority for the university: Smart said that the university had record enrollment last Spring and Summer. He also added that this fall, enrollment was still up slightly--by 106 students—on the first day back to class.

Smart says that to continue the trend of increasing enrollment, the university will focus more heavily on marketing itself, especially to incoming freshman and transfer students from community colleges.

Toward the end of his speech, Smart addressed the ongoing investigation into missing funds at the university bookstore. Hundreds of thousands of dollars are unaccounted for, and the bookstore’s former director is no longer with the university.

 “My challenge would be, lets not focus on the one bad thing that has happened. Lets focus on the literally thousands of good things that are happening, including the tens of thousands of good things that our students are doing everyday, and lets go back to work for them. Thank you.”

(Nat Sound: Applause)

You can find the entire PowerPoint presentation for this year’s State of the University address by going to the university’s website:

For KSMU News, I’m Shane Franklin.