Prof. Frank's natural disaster class

Students in Professor Jerry Frank's "Acts of God: An Environmental History of Natural Disasters" class volunteered to assist in the cleanup following the May 22 tornado in Jefferson City. The group includes Saige Bexten, Alexandra Cappetta, Noah Carroll, Marigrace Heinze, Skylar Irwin, Peter Leipold, Tianyu Liu, Olivia McKee, and Erin O'Connor and Prof. Frank.

As they approached Jefferson City to assist in the cleanup from the May 22 tornado, a group of MU students say they were shocked to see houses submerged in what looked like a lake surrounding Highway 63.

2019 A&S graduate

The College of Arts and Science awarded degrees to nearly 1,350 undergraduate students during its spring 2019 commencement exercises at Mizzou Arena on Sunday, May 19. Dean Patricia Okker served as the master of ceremonies and U.S. Senator Tim Kaine, BA ’79 economics, was the keynote speaker.

ROTC cadets participating in the Bataan death march
Mizzou students Sydney Feltenstein and Kimberly Woods are preparing for a future of leadership in the U.S. Army while earning their degrees. In March, these two cadets of the U.S. Army Reserve Officer Training Corps at the University of Missouri inspired their peers by completing a grueling 26.2-mile race while wearing full combat attire and carrying a 35-pound military backpack.
U.S. Senator Tim Kaine

U.S. Senator Tim Kaine of Virginia says he is looking forward to speaking to graduates at the College of Arts and Science graduation ceremonies May 19 in Mizzou Arena, especially since this year marks his 40th anniversary as a Mizzou alumnus.

Mateo inside a committee room inside the Longworth Congressional Office Building.

Mateo Mateo says one of the most important lessons he learned at Mizzou during his freshman year is to pay attention in class.

Professor David Schulz

David Schulz, a professor of biological sciences in the MU College of Arts and Science, and a team of scientists at the University of Missouri have discovered that a neuron’s own electrical signal, or voltage, can indicate whether the neuron is functioning normally. If that voltage is absent, scientists say everything is “out of whack.”

COLUMBIA, Mo. – Nerve cells, or neurons — specifically the “workhorse cells” involved in walking, breathing and chewing — can adjust to changes in the body, but they never stop working unless there is an fatal injury. What exactly signals neurons to keep acting and operating normally has not been known until now.

2018 A&S commencement

The College of Arts and Science will hold its spring 2019 commencement exercises in Mizzou Arena on May 19. Before seniors and graduate students walk across the stage to accept their degrees, we sat down with five of them to talk about what they learned during their time at Mizzou and what the future holds for them.

Curators’ Distinguished Professor of Psychological Sciences David Geary

Curators’ Distinguished Professor of Psychological Sciences David Geary says his approach may be useful for identifying genetic and environmental influences on the development of intelligence and the rate of age-related declines in cognition.

Curators’ Distinguished Professor of Psychological Sciences David Geary’s research focuses on sex differences and sex-specific vulnerabilities. For example, prenatal exposure to toxins and other stressors can affect girls differently than boys, or vice versa.

color guard

The University of Missouri Reserve Officer Training Corps will hold its annual Joint Services “pass in review” ceremony celebrating more than 150 years of military officer training at MU. Cadets and midshipmen from the Army, Air Force, Navy and the Marine Corps ROTC programs will participate in the ceremony, a long-standing U.S. military tradition that dates back to 1778 and serves as a way for a newly assigned commander to inspect the troops.

actuarial students in class

The University of Missouri’s actuarial mathematics program requires students to complete courses in mathematics, statistics, economics, and finance; undergraduates are encouraged to pass at least two of the rigorous exams required to become an associate of the Society of Actuaries; and it is recommended students complete a summer internship prior to their senior year.

If you are a high school student who enjoys mathematics and has an aptitude for it, if you would like to work with the most advanced tools and big data, and if you are creative and intuitive, you should consider becoming an actuary.

Students working with data at Data Fest

The Department of Economics and the Truman School of Public Affairs within the College of Arts and Science at the University of Missouri are pleased to announce the Missouri Data Fellows program.

It is an answer to the current data crisis that many states — including Missouri — are facing. There is simply too much available data and not enough qualified data analysts.  

new machine designed by A. Suits

This apparatus, designed by Prof. Suits and graduate student Chandika Amarasinghe and fabricated in the Department of Physics & Astronomy Machine Shop, allows his team to study collisions in molecular beams in vacuum. The beams are going almost the same direction so that the relative velocity between them can approach zero, like two cars moving the same direction on the highway. Reseachers can then take “pictures” of the scattering patterns when the collision happens. The team's current experiment uses four different powerful lasers to prepare the molecules in a single quantum state and then detect them after the collision.


The University of Missouri recently was awarded two highly coveted Multidisciplinary University Research Initiative (MURI) awards from the Department of Defense (DoD), making MU one of only three higher education institutions in the nation to receive more than one award. The University of Washington and Massachusetts Institute of Technology also received two of the 24 MURI grants awarded this year from a pool of 295 proposals.

Marjorie Skubic, left, Giovanna Guidoboni

Marjorie Skubic, left, Giovanna Guidoboni and a team at the University of Missouri are currently working to develop a standardized model to interpret the results of a ballistocardiogram that could provide an additional approach for early detection of various cardiovascular diseases.

COLUMBIA, Mo. – Every heart beat sends blood flowing throughout the human body. While an electrocardiogram uses a contact approach to measure the electrical activity of the heart, a ballistocardiogram is a non-contact way of measuring the mechanical effect of the blood flow through the cardiovascular system.

Senior Associate Dean Cooper Drury

College of Arts and Science Senior Associate Dean Cooper Drury, a professor of political science, has been named the Foreign Policy Analysis (FPA) Distinguished Scholar of 2019 by the International Studies Association (ISA). The award was presented to Drury at the ISA’s annual conference, held in Toronto in March. ISA, founded in 1959, has over 6,500 members worldwide and is the most respected and widely known scholarly association dedicated to international studies.

Francis Quad and Jesse Hall

Four faculty researchers in the College of Arts and Science have received national fellowships this semester, allowing them to concentrate on their research projects and publications in collaboration with other researchers and scholars in their fields. Fellowships typically provide stipends covering salary, travel expenses, publication expenses, and living expenses for up to one year.

a and s banner

Professors, teaching assistants, and student advisers at the University of Missouri often receive accolades for their work—from their school or college, from campus administration, or from the university system. Instructors and advisers in the College of Arts and Science consistently say the award that means the most to them is the one from students—the Chalk Awards, presented by the College of Arts and Science Student Council each semester.

Mark Fauser and Burt Reynolds

Mark Fauser on stage with his long-time friend and mentor Burt Reynolds. Fauser says he wrote his book Because of Burt to "let the world know what a generous heart he had."

For people growing up in the 1970’s, Burt Reynolds was ubiquitous, starring in popular movies, appearing on nightly talk shows, and popping up in a variety of commercials. For a five-year period, Reynolds was the nation’s biggest box office star, anchoring hits like Deliverance, The Longest Yard, and Smokey and the Bandit.

MU columns

Each year, the University of Missouri System President’s Awards are presented on behalf of President Mun Choi to faculty members across the four campuses of the UM System. These highly competitive awards recognize faculty who have made exceptional contributions in advancing the mission of the university.

Haley Kranstuber Horstman

Haley Kranstuber Horstman and her team hope the study’s findings will encourage couples to “co-cope” with the experience by using metaphors and other descriptive phrases when talking about miscarriage.

COLUMBIA, Mo. – “Lost gift.” “Cataclysm.” “Death of a loved one.” “Emptiness.” “Chaotic movement.” “Rock.” “Guard.” “Repairman. “Secondary character.” Researchers at the University of Missouri say men often use descriptions such as these to cope with their partner’s miscarriage and to describe their role in the experience.

Curators’ Distinguished Professor James Birchler

James Birchler is a Curators’ Distinguished Professor in the Division of Biological Sciences.

The Maize Genetics Executive Committee has announced that University of Missouri Professor James Birchler will receive the 2020 Barbara McClintock Prize for Plant Genetics and Genome Studies.

The announcement was made in St. Louis, MO, on March 15 during the 61st annual Maize Genetics Conference.


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