Drone aerial coverage of Stankowski Field

From the desk of William Stackman, Vice Provost for Student Affairs

I want to take a moment to welcome those of you who are joining the more than 30,000 students at the University of Missouri this fall.

This coming semester gives us an opportunity for a fresh start after the disruptions caused by the pandemic this spring, and I couldn’t be more excited.

I’m also humbled by the trust you’re placing in us. It’s a heavy responsibility under the best of circumstances. You’re entrusting us with four years of your lives in most cases, years in which you will grow and mature as scholars and as human beings.

The responsibility we bear this year is even heavier. You are trusting us not only with your education but also with your health and well-being — and doing so at a time of great uncertainty.

At Mizzou, we accept the responsibility eagerly, and not just because we live for our students’ success. We accept responsibility for our new students because we feel it is our mission to share the benefits of this world-class research university.

At Mizzou, you will work side by side with some of the world’s best faculty to advance the arts, humanities and sciences. You will get a head start on your career working in newsrooms, in labs and collaborating with businesses.

At Mizzou, we feel obliged to produce and disseminate knowledge that will improve the quality of life in the state, the nation and the world.

When you come to Mizzou this fall, you take up your own role in a community that is guided by four values: Respect, Responsibility, Discovery and Excellence. Those values will be your constant companions in your time here. Trust them, and they will serve you well.

My responsibility as Vice Provost for Student Affairs is to focus on meeting your needs. The Division of Student Affairs is here to help you easily find the basics — food, housing, health care and more.

Student Affairs also provides learning environments, leadership opportunities and innovative programs that lead to intellectual development and a well-rounded college experience. We offer a plethora of resources, including:

  • 600+ student organizations
  • 61 fraternities and sororities
  • 24/7 mental health support

In addition, we offer access to virtual resources like Sanvello, an app which can help you manage stress, anxiety and depression; and Zoutrition, an online tool that can assist you in making wise choices to meet your nutritional goals.

There is a small army of caring people here at Mizzou, from the health care workers in Student Health & Well-Being to the professionals in Mizzou Families, all eager to help you succeed. I hope you are beginning to feel that devotion as we approach the fall semester.

Even now, as we enter summer, the situation surrounding the COVID-19 pandemic is changing daily. Because circumstances are fluid, we are actively preparing for multiple scenarios to keep our campus community safe this fall.

The coming semester will look a little different from those in the past, but our dedication to your success remains the same. That is why we will be implementing social distancing and taking other measures to guard your health and well-being. It is going to take all of us, working together, to keep campus safe.

My request to you is to start thinking now of the actions you can take and the necessary precautions for staying healthy this fall. I also ask that you be prepared to adhere to our university guidelines regarding COVID-19. Further guidelines and recommendations will be shared as we get closer to the fall semester.

Please know that we are doing everything we possibly can, and we will keep you updated as more details become available. In the meantime, you may also be interested in the precautions we recommend as well as an FAQ put together by the Department of Residential Life.

All this matter because I want you to feel that you’re a part of the Mizzou community. As such, I am here to listen to your concerns at any time. You can phone at 573-882-0157 or email me at william.stackman@missouri.edu.

In closing, let me say again how excited I am to welcome you to Mizzou — and to thank you for your trust. You are joining a resilient community of courageous scholars, and you have my respect and support.