Nov 3 2021

An image of the MizzouForward logo.On Monday, I was thrilled to introduce MizzouForward — a transformative $1.5 billion investment in the continued excellence of our university. MizzouForward is a first-of-its-kind initiative to strengthen key research disciplines and help us improve lives around the world.

There are countless ways MizzouForward will impact our ambitious work, and I’m thrilled to share more details in the weeks ahead. Every groundbreaking discovery begins with amazing researchers. That’s why we’ve already started recruiting new faculty members who will help us realize MizzouForward’s vision of collaborative, interdisciplinary innovation. We’re aiming to recruit 150 new faculty by 2026 who will supercharge our research in three high-priority areas:

Our first candidates came to campus last week for interviews, and I was so impressed with their accomplishments and ambition. We are scheduling the next round of candidates who will all deliver a public keynote lecture about their cutting-edge research. I encourage our entire campus community to attend these presentations and hear firsthand from those who will help build the future of Mizzou.

— Mun

NextGen grand opening

Oct 13 2021

A photo of the Roy Blunt NextGen Precision Health building

The Roy Blunt NextGen Precision Health building is almost ready for the grand opening.

The big day is nearly here! We’re thrilled to celebrate the grand opening of the Roy Blunt NextGen Precision Health building on the University of Missouri’s campus on Tuesday, Oct. 19.

We began with a vision to create a dynamic hub of research excellence — a place where top researchers from Mizzou will harness the combined strengths of the MU Research Reactor, MU Health Care and the other UM System universities to find cures for society’s toughest diseases.

After more than two years of construction, the wait is finally over.

We’re thrilled to join NextGen supporters from all over campus and across the country. We’re particularly honored to welcome Francis Collins, director of the National Institutes of Health, and U.S. Sen. Roy Blunt, the building’s namesake and a tireless supporter of the university’s mission. They support the mission of NextGen and believe in its promise to make lifesaving discoveries that will improve the health of Missourians and beyond.

We’re pleased to come together and celebrate this historic event, but we know our lifesaving work is just getting started.

This state-of-the-art facility anchors the NextGen institute and brings together an exceptional set of resources under one roof. By connecting the right people with the right tools at the right time, we will accelerate lifesaving discoveries and transform health care in Missouri and around the globe.

— Mun

Celebrating the 2021 Missouri Honor Medal honorees

Oct 6 2021

A photo of President Choi with the Missouri Honor Medal honorees and Dean Dave Kurpius.

(Left to right): President Mun Y. Choi, Richard Edelman, Eugene Robinson, Maria Hinojosa, Tom Knudson, Dean David Kurpius.

Last night, I had the privilege to help present the 2021 Missouri Honor Medal. Since 1930, this award has recognized leaders in journalism and strategic communication, including Sir Winston Churchill; Walter Cronkite; Helen Thomas, a former member of the White House press corps; and Cheryl Berman, CEO and Chief Creative Officer of unbundled. Our 2021 honorees are:

  • Richard Edelman, CEO of Edelman, a global communications firm;
  • Maria Hinojosa, anchor and executive producer of the broadcast program, “Latino USA,” and a multimedia journalist with work on PBS, NPR, CNN, CBS and others;
  • Tom Knudson, a Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist whose complex coverage of agriculture, the environment and environmental exploitation has appeared in numerous newspapers;
  • Eugene Robinson, a Pulitzer Prize-winning columnist for The Washington Post.

What’s so special to me about this award is how it captures the broad impact this field has on communities around the world. Every year, Mizzou has the opportunity to celebrate life-changing work that reflects our commitment to educating global citizens for a global society. All four of these individuals represent the excellence we hold ourselves to at the Missouri School of Journalism. And they highlight our imperative to build the next generation of journalists and communicators who have the skills to engage, innovate and produce in today’s digital age.

— Mun

Homecoming 2021!

Oct 4 2021

Happy Homecoming week! There are so many great events as we get to return to the in-person experiences this year that make our celebration so special. My calendar is full. I can’t wait to visit with our incredible alumni, support the blood drive, attend the parade (which will also be live-streamed for the very first time), watch our Tigers face off against the University of North Texas in football, and much more.

I hope to see many of you out and about while we come together to celebrate Mizzou and our community. And I’ll be posting more in the days ahead as the fun continues. MIZ!

— Mun


Teaching excellence

Sep 29 2021

A photo of President Choi at the William T. Kemper Fellowships plaque celebration.

President Choi offering remarks at the William T. Kemper Fellowships plaque celebration in Jesse Hall.

I want to congratulate our 2020 and 2021 Kemper Fellows once again. Yesterday, we had the opportunity to celebrate these individuals on the second floor of Jesse Hall as we changed out the honorary Kemper Fellows plaques for this academic year. It was wonderful to come together in-person and recognize the incredible teaching and scholarship these Fellows generate at our institution.

Teaching excellence is the heart of our university’s mission. For 30 years, the William T. Kemper Fellowship for Teaching Excellence, supported by the Kemper Foundation through Commerce Bank, has recognized faculty members who go above and beyond to serve our students and enliven the classroom. I am so grateful for the hard work and commitment of all our Fellows, and for the stewardship our faculty continue to provide for our students, our university and our broader community year after year.

— Mun

155th Annual Missouri Press Convention & Trade Show

Sep 23 2021

Tomorrow, I have the privilege of joining the 155th Annual Missouri Press Convention & Trade Show as its keynote speaker. Since the School of Journalism was founded in 1908, Mizzou has risen to the challenge as a leader in innovation and excellence in the fields of journalism and strategic communications. We recognize that freedom of expression is an indispensable element of our democracy and fundamental to our community’s ability to discover, explore, interpret and question knowledge.

We see this important work happening in so many ways and across so many programs, including our J-School, our Novak Leadership Institute and our Broader Impacts Program. I look forward to talking about all of this important work with those who provide news and service to readers throughout our state. I know that MU will continue to ensure a strong future for Missouri journalism through its exceptional faculty members and students who are committed to research, education and an informed citizenry.

— Mun


Launching the DeLine Community Research Site

Sep 17 2021

A photo of President Choi speaking at the DeLine Community Research Site grand opening.

President Choi at the DeLine Community Research Site grand opening (photo courtesy of Lisa Krantz).

Yesterday, I enjoyed attending the grand opening of the DeLine Community Research Site. Located just outside of Columbia, this site will be an invaluable resource for our CAFNR students and faculty who are tackling issues such as sustainable development and resource conservation. Scholars and students from the rest of our campus and K-12 students will also benefit from the vast possibilities for experiential learning and research.

A photo of Mizzou representatives and community members gathered outdoors at the new DeLine Community Research Site.

Mizzou representatives and community members gather at the site, located just outside of Columbia (photo courtesy of Lisa Krantz).

This opportunity is only possible because of our innovative partnership with Greg and Kelly DeLine of DeLine Holdings. They imagined a place right here in Boone County where people work together on local issues with global significance. By uniting the entrepreneurial qualities of DeLine Holdings with the innovation of our Mizzou community, I know we can achieve great things.

Public-private partnerships like this help us build our research capacity and give our students even more opportunities to learn by doing. This new research site is the latest example of how we live out our land-grant mission of research, education and engagement for the people of Missouri.

— Mun

Mizzou’s transformative trajectory

Sep 15 2021

An photo of the Columns and Jesse Hall from above.U.S. News and World Report released their annual rankings, and the University of Missouri has a lot to celebrate. We remained the No. 1 best value among public national universities in neighboring states and the No. 12 best value among all public national universities. Here are a few other highlights:

  • No. 58 among national public universities
  • No. 72 best value among national universities (up 13 spots from last year)
  • No. 73 best college for veterans (also up 13 spots)
  • No. 122 among all universities

These rankings illustrate what our stakeholders already know: The University of Missouri is an institution of excellence at all levels and a dynamic hub of innovation in the Midwest. Our state, national and global reputation reflects our work across campus to forge new discoveries and help our students succeed. And while we’re pleased with our progress, we are far from finished.

In the coming year, we’re going to continue investing in our research, education and engagement missions — an effort that will receive a major boost when the Roy Blunt NextGen Precision Health Building opens next month.

Thank you to everyone who continues to support Mizzou’s growth. Our university truly is on a transformative trajectory.

— Mun

Patriot Day commemoration

Sep 11 2021

A photo of a wreath-laying from a previous Patriot Day.Each year for Patriot Day, Mizzou hosts a public tribute and wreath-laying ceremony in remembrance of the nearly 3,000 individuals who lost their lives on September 11.

This year, to honor the 20th anniversary of 9/11, Mizzou has partnered with the City of Columbia for a special event. A first for our campus and broader community, this event includes a presentation of the colors by the Joint Services Color Guard and City Honor Guards on Francis Quadrangle, as well as a helicopter flyover by MU Health Care.

I am honored that Provost Latha Ramchand will be speaking on behalf of our university. The Mizzou Football Team and I will be standing with our Tiger family in spirit from Kentucky. Because no matter where we are in the world, we commemorate this day as a proud community of Tigers — to remember those we lost and recommit ourselves to building a better world in their honor.

— Mun

Thank you to our student organizations

Sep 10 2021

Photos of Jesse and the ColumnsI was flipping through The Maneater the other day and came across a great article about our student organizations. Two weeks into the fall semester, they have been working tirelessly to support our university and community in our continued response to COVID-19. Our student organizations helped promote MU’s free vaccination clinic at the end of August and continue to support the university’s comprehensive public health efforts.

From Sept. 14-15, we will be hosting another walk-in vaccination clinic for all students, staff and faculty in the MU Student Center. You can find more information about that clinic here.

I am so grateful for the commitment and hard work of our students. Every step of the way, they show Missouri and the world why Mizzou is an institution that leads across the board.

— Mun