University of Missouri Vice Provost of Undergraduate Studies Jim Spain delivered the keynote address of this year’s Pike County Extension Council Banquet, which was held recently at the Curryville Presbyterian Church.
Spain, who has been a member of the faculty at MU for decades, began his remarks by addressing the protest and unrest that led to the resignations of former UM System President Tim Wolfe and MU Chancellor R. Bowen Loftin.
“It hurt me as bad as anybody to see what unfolded the year before last,” Spain said. “All I can do tonight and all that we will continue to do is to say that we know we let you down. We did not do the job that we have been entrusted to do for generations, which is to educate and ensure the safety of all of our students.”
Spain said that despite the chaos of the recent past, there are many things that Missourians should be proud of about MU.
“What we do is to prepare our state’s people to not just get a job, but to serve their communities,” Spain said. “Students come to MU because of our academic programs and they leave ready to take on the world.”
Spain pointed to the work of MU students at the school’s medical school and nuclear reactor for leading the effort in researching the use of nucleotides in the treatment of bone cancer.
“That is something we can all be proud of,” Spain said. “That is the only place these kinds of nucleotides come from in the U.S. That is happening at your University of Missouri. Be proud of that.”