The crowd on campus for Legacy Day on August 28 knew they were celebrating a special day in the history of Missouri State. They couldn’t have known the extent of its significance, however: Before the day was over, President Michael T. Nietzel had announced the largest fundraising goal ever set at the University.
Spirit leaders cheered and a cluster of biodegradable maroon and white balloons were released as Nietzel introduced Our Promise: The Campaign for Missouri State and divulged the target of $125 million — “a very ambitious goal,” he acknowledged, but by no means an unobtainable one.
Alumnus Thomas Strong, one of the co-chairs of the Our Promise national steering committee, spoke about why he wanted to be involved in the first comprehensive campaign since the University’s name change.
The University “was built on the vision of…early philanthropists,” Strong said. “I ask for help from every one of you. I ask each of you to become personally involved in this campaign.”
Christopher W. Polley, the student body president, reminded the crowd that private support keeps tuition affordable for students. Dr. Margaret Weaver, the Faculty Senate president, promised that instructors would be “good stewards of the generosity you have shown to us.”