MU Pride points

Top students

MU’s 35,441 highest-ever enrollment in fall 2014 includes record numbers of international (2,417), minority (5,486) and out-of-state students (10,855). MU Tigers graduate, on average, in 4.1 years.

Mizzou has almost twice as many Bright Flight Scholars — students who score in the top three percent of all Missouri students taking the ACT or SAT — as any other college or university in Missouri. The number of high-ability students with 30 or above ACT scores at MU increased by 26 percent (fall 2014 compared to fall 2013).

The quality of entering Mizzou freshmen continues to rise. The 2014 class has an average ACT score of 25.9, compared with the national average of 21 and state average of 21.8.

MU retains 86.2 percent of its students for their sophomore year, higher than the national average of 79.9 percent and state average of 75.7 percent.

MU’s graduation rates far exceed national and state averages for four-year public institutions. The six-year rate for Mizzou is 69.4 percent compared to the national average of 57.7 percent and state average of 55.2 percent.

MU students have high pass rates on national exams. Recently, 91 percent of law students passed the bar exam on the first try while 100 percent of teacher education students, 98 percent of veterinary students, 100 percent of medical students, 94 percent of nursing students and 100 percent of health professions students passed their national licensure and certification tests.

MU graduate students perform many of the hands-on aspects of research and go on to top-level work throughout society. Mizzou’s 7,787 graduate and professional students make up 22 percent of the university’s enrollment.

MU’s NCAA Division I athletic program has 520 student-athletes in 20 sports, many ranked in the top 25 nationally.

MU ranks second in the Southeastern Conference based on average Academic Progress Rate, which is determined by eligibility and graduation of student-athletes.

Global university

MU’s founders established the first state university in Thomas Jefferson’s Louisiana Purchase territory, sharing his ideal that “diffusion of knowledge among the people” is essential for a free society.

MU's establishment in 1839 as the first public university west of the Mississippi River started a long tradition of firsts. MU has the world’s first School of Journalism (founded in 1908), Missouri’s first and only College of Veterinary Medicine (founded in 1946), the first engineering program west of the Mississippi (founded in 1849) and the nation’s first College of Education at a public university (founded in 1868).

Based on quality of teaching, research and scholarship, MU is one of only 34 public U.S. universities — and one of only two institutions in Missouri — invited to membership in the prestigious Association of American Universities (AAU).

Many states fund separate research and land-grant universities, but Missouri combines those roles at its flagship institution. MU is both a land-grant university with a mission to serve the public good and the state’s largest public research university.

Classified with American universities that offer the most educational opportunities and highest level of instruction, MU is designated “Research University/Very High” and “Community Engaged” by the Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching.

MU has agreements outside the U.S. with many educational, corporate and government entities. These partnerships help the university attract external funding and top faculty and students.

MU has 2,417 international students from 122 countries, the largest enrollment of any Missouri higher education institution. During the 2013-14 academic year, international students and their families supported U.S. innovation, enriched American culture and contributed $26.8 billion to the U.S. economy.

MU has more than a century of history in international relations. Two Chinese students were among 64 in the School of Journalism’s 1908 inaugural class. By 1921, faculty and alumni had helped establish one of the first journalism schools in China at St. John’s University in Shanghai.

In 1986, officials from MU, the University of Missouri System and the University of Western Cape launched a longstanding academic and research exchange program to aid South Africans disadvantaged by their government’s apartheid policies. It was the first such agreement between a U.S. university and a historically black South African university.

Generous supporters worldwide invest in MU. Thousands serve in volunteer roles, and their private gifts endow resources for the future and fund scholarships, academic programs and life-changing research. In FY2014, alumni and friends made 67,751 gifts to MU totaling $118.7 million.

The Higher Learning Commission has accredited MU since 1913. Many degree programs have specialized accreditation through national associations, councils and commissions.

Economic power

MU boosts the economy by performing research, generating jobs, improving graduates’ earning potential, and creating and commercializing businesses.

A $2.1 billion global enterprise, MU accounts for 70 percent, on average, of the research dollars flowing to Missouri public universities. Research generates new knowledge and jobs.

Every week, Missouri’s economy benefits as MU brings in an average of $1.9 million in private donations and attracts $2.8 million in federal research awards.

MU has about 3,100 active grants and contracts and spent $236.4 million on research in FY2013, including $111.5 million from federal sources.

Mizzou graduates more than 8,300 students annually, educating 27 percent of all undergraduates and 62 percent of doctoral students at Missouri’s public universities. Roughly one in three degrees awarded is in science, technology, engineering, mathematics or health fields.

MU alumni are essential for the state’s workforce. For example, more Missouri physicians earned medical degrees from MU than from any other university, almost two-thirds of Missouri veterinarians are graduates, and law alumni serve at every level of the state judiciary.

Since FY2010, MU has filed 450 U.S. patents and signed 199 options and licenses for new technologies developed at the university.

From FY2010 to FY2014, university income from the commercialization of faculty inventions totaled $40.8 million, and 23 startup companies licensed MU technology.

Examples of recent commercialization ventures: Organovo, based on MU’s 3-D bioprinting technology that builds living tissues, is now traded on the New York Stock Exchange; Beyond Meat, a soy-based meat substitute, is on retail shelves; Nanova Biomaterials Inc. is manufacturing a fluoride dental varnish called StarBright; and Eternogen, which produces collagen-based tissue products, is now in the commercialization phase after attracting $1.5 million in investments.

During fiscal years 2012-14, MU’s Extension Business Development Program generated $2.1 billion in economic impact for the Missouri economy, helping clients increase sales by $643 million, gain $809 million in government contracts and create 19,145 jobs.

During fiscal years 2000-12, MU’s Extension Business Development Program generated $2.5 billion in economic impact for the Missouri economy, helping clients increase sales by $986 million, gain $857 million in government contracts and create 25,235 jobs.

Athletic events generated $247 million of spending in Columbia during FY2014, MU’s second year in the Southeastern Conference.

The Association of Public and Land-Grant Universities designates MU as an “Innovation and Economic Prosperity University” for exceptional tech transfer, entrepreneurship, workforce development and community partnerships.

Last year, MU’s $516 million in campus construction projects created jobs and increased spending.

Groundbreaking discoveries

MU has pushed the frontiers of research and scholarship for nearly two centuries. Faculty inventors and creators share discoveries with students and link Missouri industry, agriculture, emerging businesses and innovative ideas.

MU is one of only six public institutions nationwide that can claim a medical school, a veterinary medicine college and a law school on the same campus. Faculty and students also have immediate access to agriculture and engineering colleges along with the largest nuclear research reactor on any American campus.

As the state’s major public research university, MU spends about $236 million annually on scientific research. The university also provides extensive end-market support of critical industries, such as conducting clinical trials and testing animals to determine the cause of death and disease.

Known for collaborative, interdisciplinary research, MU has incomparable expertise and resources on a global scale in four areas: Food for the Future, One Health/One Medicine, Media of the Future and Sustainable Energy. We call it The Mizzou Advantage.

With 120 plant scientists, 18 agricultural research centers statewide and MU Extension innovations for farmers, Mizzou is improving global food security.

Examples of first-rate interdisciplinary research environments at MU include the Thompson Center for Autism and Neurodevelopmental Disorders, the Christopher S. Bond Life Sciences Center, the Dalton Cardiovascular Research Center and the Donald W. Reynolds Journalism Institute.

The Coulter Foundation partners with MU to fund $1 million annually in biomedical research to develop new products and devices that improve the lives of patients.

Mizzou has the nation’s most powerful university research reactor and is the largest U.S. supplier to pharmaceutical firms of radioisotopes for diagnosing and treating cancer. Scientists in nuclear medicine and other disciplines invented Therasphere® for liver cancer, Quadramet® for bone cancer pain and Ceretecfor brain imaging.

Mizzou is home to some of the world’s best nanoscientists, who work with particles at the nearly unimaginable scale of one billionth of a meter to fight cancer and other diseases.

MU has delivered the benefits of research for decades. Faculty conducted landmark studies in crop rotation that led to advances in sustainable agriculture and developed Mo17, the basis for much of today’s hybrid corn; performed the world’s first pediatric angioplasty to correct heart defects in babies; and improved the quality of life for arthritis sufferers by showing that regular exercise is the best treatment for the condition.

Recent faculty contributions include a new process to repair damaged knees; a cancer treatment using gold nanoparticles; hand-held X-rays; advances in older adult care; a heartburn drug called Zegerid; new knowledge to strengthen families; a breakthrough using gene therapy to treat muscular dystrophy; and innovative journalism technologies.

Mizzou improves human and animal health by offering leading-edge medical treatments through 286 clinical trials.

Solutions for a better life

Supportive environment

Almost 2,000 MU students participate in 100 Freshman Interest Groups, or FIGs. They live in the same residence hall and attend classes together, resulting in higher retention and graduation rates.

Consistently named a veteran-friendly school by G.I. Jobs, U.S. News & World Report and other national media, MU was the first of three institutions the country to open a full-service center for veterans and their dependents.

Mizzou’s top-tier Student Recreation Complex, one of the 10 largest facilities of its kind in the country, is a core component of student life at MU.

360 Degree Learning

MU’s Museum of Art and Archaeology holds the state’s third most extensive art collection and is accredited through the American Association of Museums. The university also is home to Missouri’s only anthropology museum, which holds the world’s largest archery collection.