New UM President Discusses His First Semester on the Job

4 years 2 weeks 3 days ago May 11, 2012 May 11, 2012 Friday, May 11 2012 Friday, May 11, 2012 5:07:00 PM CDT in News
By: Emily Spain

COLUMBIA - As Mizzou students celebrate graduation Friday and Saturday, UM President Tim Wolfe celebrates finishing his first school semester in his new role.

"It sure feels great to be home," Wolfe said. Wolfe is a Rock Bridge High School and MU alum, and said he remembers Columbia as his launching pad. 

"This campus gave me what I think is the perfect start of a business career because I had all the fundamentals," he said.

Wolfe started his undergraduate years at MU in the late 1970s, where he said he spent most of his time in Middlebush Hall on campus earning his business degree.  He graduated in 1980. Since then, Cornell Hall has become the new home to business majors.  Despite a growing campus and new additions, there's something that has remained the same over the years.  The financial burden of college continues to strike students pocket books years later. 

Something Wolfe said he remembers himself, "I was manager of the Sinclair gas station. I was a waiter and bartender at the Pasta Factory. I was going between jobs to get through school without owing the bank."

He hopes his past experience will lend him a hand in relating to what students are facing right now. 

"I can appreciate the challenges that they are going through and obviously our goal is to make the University of Missouri and as affordable to as many students as possible," Wolfe said.

Now back on his old stomping ground, he said that's a top priority and his biggest challenge.

"The challenges might be the frustration that you can't make the changes and get the necessary resources to continue to support [what's] needed here."

Wolfe is working against some of the worst financial numbers the UM System has seen.

"Nobody would like a cut, but it is what it is," he said. "Well the first and most immediate challenge is that of the budget. We have a 7% reduction in the budget with state funding."

Governor Nixon originally announced a 12.5% cut to the UM System's budget that sent shock waves through the four schools it supports. Nixon later lowered that cut to 7%, but schools like Mizzou still have to raise tuition by 3%.  Only 30% of funding comes from the state, while 70% comes from tuition at MU. Wolfe said the tuition increase matches current inflation rates, but adds the system continuously reminds the state it needs help.

"We're having conversations all the time. It's a non-stop conversation of what higher education offers to the state of Missouri," Wolfe said.

Wolfe argues the schools within the UM System are a huge asset the state shouldn't overlook. He said, for example, the schools conduct 94% of the research in the state; research that leads to jobs and economic development. 

"I firmly believe that higher education is what's going to get us to a much quicker economic recovery than what we've seen so far," he said.

Cuts, however, are still imminent and Wolfe said around 200 to 240 jobs are on the line. For those who worry they might get the cut, Wolfe has this message.

"Rest assured, the last thing we want to do is eliminate any job," he said. "We are a people based business and anything we can do to protect our people we are going to be doing."

As Wolfe takes on a diminishing budget and growing student enrollments, he hopes those in the system, state and local community will learn to trust him.

"I am who I am," he said. "I'm passionate about what I do and I think over time people will see my passion and find overtime that they will trust me. "

 

More News

Grid
List
MOBERLY – Mid-Missourians could immerse themselves in history this Memorial Day weekend at a World War II reenactment in Moberly.... More >>
1 hour ago May 28, 2016 May 28, 2016 Saturday, May 28 2016 Saturday, May 28, 2016 7:39:00 PM CDT in Continuous News
CENTRALIA — A Memorial Day display in Centralia is one that turns heads as people pass by. The "Avenue... More >>
3 hours ago May 28, 2016 May 28, 2016 Saturday, May 28 2016 Saturday, May 28, 2016 5:26:00 PM CDT in News
FULTON - VFW Post 2657 celebrated Memorial Day with the sale of “Buddy” Poppies. VFW members and volunteers stood... More >>
5 hours ago May 28, 2016 May 28, 2016 Saturday, May 28 2016 Saturday, May 28, 2016 3:08:00 PM CDT in News
COLUMBIA - The 28th annual Salute to Veterans Celebration and Air Show took flight Saturday at the Columbia Regional Airport.... More >>
7 hours ago May 28, 2016 May 28, 2016 Saturday, May 28 2016 Saturday, May 28, 2016 1:08:00 PM CDT in News
JEFFERSON CITY (AP) — Missouri lawmakers took steps this year to address the growing number of drug overdoses, but health... More >>
7 hours ago May 28, 2016 May 28, 2016 Saturday, May 28 2016 Saturday, May 28, 2016 12:54:44 PM CDT in News
BUTLER (AP) — A western Missouri community is grieving after the death of a spunky 12-year-old who was killed in... More >>
9 hours ago May 28, 2016 May 28, 2016 Saturday, May 28 2016 Saturday, May 28, 2016 11:41:14 AM CDT in News
COLUMBIA – While many convenience stores are working extra hours to keep up with record-breaking Memorial Day travel predictions ,... More >>
9 hours ago May 28, 2016 May 28, 2016 Saturday, May 28 2016 Saturday, May 28, 2016 11:02:00 AM CDT in News
KANSAS CITY (AP) — A Kansas City woman who pleaded guilty to second-degree murder in the death of her 2-year-old... More >>
21 hours ago May 27, 2016 May 27, 2016 Friday, May 27 2016 Friday, May 27, 2016 11:10:23 PM CDT in News
COLUMBIA — A 22-year-old man was taken to the hospital with non-life threatening injuries Friday after he was shot twice.... More >>
22 hours ago May 27, 2016 May 27, 2016 Friday, May 27 2016 Friday, May 27, 2016 10:52:00 PM CDT in News
CAPE GIRARDEAU (AP) — A man has been arrested and charged in the death of a man whose body was... More >>
1 day ago May 27, 2016 May 27, 2016 Friday, May 27 2016 Friday, May 27, 2016 8:15:25 PM CDT in News
JEFFERSON CITY — Gov. Jay Nixon declared a state of emergency Friday as severe storms could bring more flooding throughout... More >>
1 day ago May 27, 2016 May 27, 2016 Friday, May 27 2016 Friday, May 27, 2016 7:38:00 PM CDT in News
CASSVILLE (AP) — Authorities in southwestern Missouri say an 8-year-old boy has drowned in a creek. The Missouri State... More >>
1 day ago May 27, 2016 May 27, 2016 Friday, May 27 2016 Friday, May 27, 2016 6:34:00 PM CDT in News
COLUMBIA — Local troopers remind Missouri residents what's important this Memorial Day weekend while on waters. The Missouri State... More >>
1 day ago May 27, 2016 May 27, 2016 Friday, May 27 2016 Friday, May 27, 2016 6:01:00 PM CDT in News
JEFFERSON CITY (AP) — Missouri mega-donor Rex Sinquefield is pouring millions of dollars into political committees before the Aug. 2... More >>
1 day ago May 27, 2016 May 27, 2016 Friday, May 27 2016 Friday, May 27, 2016 5:44:00 PM CDT in News
KANSAS CITY (AP) — A Kansas City, Missouri, man is accused of assaulting a female city animal control officer and... More >>
1 day ago May 27, 2016 May 27, 2016 Friday, May 27 2016 Friday, May 27, 2016 5:28:51 PM CDT in News
COLUMBIA — A pursuit that ended with a wrong way crash on Providence Road on Wednesday morning led to charges... More >>
1 day ago May 27, 2016 May 27, 2016 Friday, May 27 2016 Friday, May 27, 2016 4:13:00 PM CDT in Target 8
JEFFERSON CITY (AP) — A prominent GOP political donor is again supporting Lt. Gov. Peter Kinder as he runs for... More >>
1 day ago May 27, 2016 May 27, 2016 Friday, May 27 2016 Friday, May 27, 2016 3:50:00 PM CDT in News
JEFFERSON CITY — Missouri Attorney General Chris Koster warned consumers on Friday about Internal Revenue Service (IRS) scam calls. ... More >>
1 day ago May 27, 2016 May 27, 2016 Friday, May 27 2016 Friday, May 27, 2016 3:35:00 PM CDT in News
Columbia, MO
Broken Clouds 76°
9pm 73°
10pm 71°
11pm 69°
12am 67°

Select a station to view its upcoming schedule:

Coming Up Next

7:00p
King Kong
10:00p
KOMU 8 News @ 10
10:29p
Saturday Night Live
8:30p
Bob's Burgers
9:00p
KOMU 8 News @ Nine on The CW
9:30p
Seinfeld

Tonight's Schedule

7:00p
King Kong
7:00p
Family Guy
7:30p
Family Guy
8:00p
Bob's Burgers
8:30p
Bob's Burgers
9:00p
KOMU 8 News @ Nine on The CW
9:30p
Seinfeld