Missouri State University Operating Budget Priorities

Priority 1 - Increase MSU's operating appropriation

Last year, the General Assembly increased operating appropriations for public universities by 7%. Missouri State University greatly appreciates this investment, which helped cover cost increases such as utilities, technology and employee compensation and benefits.

Inflation was 7% in 2021 and 6.5% in 2022. Although inflation has slowed in 2023, the university is still experiencing increased costs in key areas such as labor, vendor contracts, construction and facility maintenance. In addition, health insurance claims increased by about $1 million in FY 2023. The university will also need to budget for $1.7 million in additional MOSERS costs. Moreover, MSU, like all employers, faces a challenging labor market with significant wage pressures. 

These cost increases are set against a backdrop of Missouri State’s long-standing funding challenges. A July 2023 report commissioned by the Missouri Department of Higher Education & Workforce Development and completed by the National Center for Higher Education Management Systems concluded that Missouri State needs an annual increase of $53 million in state funding and tuition to operate at a funding level comparable to peer institutions. The report identifies each institution’s funding equity ratio, which shows the percent each institution is over- or underfunded. Missouri State’s funding equity ratio is the lowest of any public university in the state, which means that it is the most underfunded university as a percent.

MSU has reallocated $22 million in expenses and eliminated nearly 50 positions in the past five years. Without the increase in state funding received last year, university leaders would have had to make further cuts and reduce services to students to fund mandatory cost increases.

For FY 2025, the Coordinating Board for Higher Education has recommended a core increase of 5% to offset cost increases driven by inflation and the need to address deferred maintenance on campuses. Missouri State University supports this request. 


Source: Research.CollegeBoard.org/Trends/College-Pricing


Springfield campus: Missouri State’s FY 2025 MoExcels proposal will allow the university to graduate more health care and mental health professionals in audiology, speech-language pathology, occupational therapy, physical therapy, psychology and counseling. By 2027-28, MoExcels funding will allow the university to increase the number of students graduating from those programs annually by about 40%. The proposal will also enhance students’experience by creating an interdisciplinary educational training facility. The facility will allow students to develop skills in a hands-on setting that reflects the multidisciplinary nature of a modern health care/mental health workplace. The proposal includes funds to renovate and equip existing space in MSU’s Kampeter Hall. The university respectfully requests $1.6 million in one-time funding to support the project. The university will provide $1.6 million in matching funds.

West Plains campus: Missouri State University-West Plains’ FY 2025 MoExcels proposal will support the creation of programs that train students to become veterinary assistants and veterinary technicians. The programs will be the only ones of their kind in south central Missouri. By 2027-28, the campus will be able to graduate 20 vet techs and 30 vet 
assistants per year. MSU-West Plains’ proposal will also allow the campus to educate students in an agricultural setting. Students will engage in hands-on learning at a farm that is being donated to the university and renovated to provide classroom and lab space. The proposal includes funds to develop the new programs, create a classroom and a lab and purchase equipment. The university respectfully requests $815,000 in one-time funds to support the project. The university will fund $925,000 (53%) of the remaining project cost.