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House approves SMSU name change

March 21, 2002
By: Robert Sandler
State Capital Bureau


Sponsor: Rep. Craig Hosmer, D-Springfield
Description: SMSU changing its name to Missouri State University
Current Status: Passed House
Next Step: On to the Senate

JEFFERSON CITY - The Missouri House gave final approval Thursday to a bill that would change the name of Southwest Missouri State University to just Missouri State University.

Proponents of the name change said it would recognize the university's growth and worldwide appeal. Rep. B.J. Marsh, R-Springfield, said SMSU now has 20,500 students from 48 states and 87 countries.

But opponents said they wondered why the legislature would want to go against the recommendations of the state Coordinating Board for Higher Education.

"This bill is not in the best interests of higher education," said Rep. Chuck Graham, D-Columbia. "I cannot believe that this is the No. 1 priority bill for higher education this year."

The bill passed by a vote of 93-47, with the entire Boone County delegation voting against it.