Jump to content

University of Missouri–St. Louis

Coordinates: 38°42′37″N 90°18′40″W / 38.710200°N 90.311055°W / 38.710200; -90.311055
From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

University of Missouri–St. Louis
MottoSalus populi suprema lex esto (Latin)
Motto in English
Let the welfare of the people be the supreme law[1][2][3]
TypePublic research university
Established1963; 61 years ago (1963)
Parent institution
University of Missouri System
Academic affiliation
Endowment$118.01 million (2023)
(UMSL only)[4]
$2.24 billion (2023)
ChancellorKristin Sobolik[6]
Academic staff
680 (Fall 2020) [7]
Administrative staff
974 (Fall 2020)[7]
Students8,023 (Fall 2023)[8]
Location, ,
United States
CampusUrban, 350-acre (0.5 sq mi; 141.6 ha)[9]
ColorsRed and gold[10]
Sporting affiliations
NCAA Division II - GLVC

The University of Missouri–St. Louis (UMSL) is a public research university in St. Louis, Missouri, United States. Established in 1963, it is the newest of the four universities in the University of Missouri System. Located on the former grounds of Bellerive Country Club, the university's campus stretches into the municipalities of Bellerive,[11] Bel-Nor[12] and Normandy.[13] Additional facilities are located at the former site of Marillac College and at Grand Center, both in St. Louis city.

Bachelor's, Master's, and doctoral programs are offered through the College of Arts and Sciences, the College of Business Administration, the College of Education, the College of Nursing, the School of Social Work, and the College of Optometry. The business school is AACSB-accredited and is the only public university in the St. Louis area to also be AACSB-accredited in accounting.[14] Preprofessional, a joint engineering program with Washington University in St. Louis, and evening programs are also offered. UMSL is home of an optometry school, providing its students with a doctorate (OD). The Pierre Laclede Honors College is UMSL's honors program. UMSL is classified among "R2: Doctoral Universities – High research activity".[15]

The university contains two libraries: The Thomas Jefferson Library which is the main library of the university and the St. Louis Mercantile Library which was founded in 1846 and is the oldest library west of the Mississippi River. The campus contains two stops on MetroLink, St. Louis' regional light rail system. A student center, academic buildings, parking structures, a performing arts center, and residential housing have been constructed over the past ten years as part of campus improvement programs. The university has a dual-enrollment agreement with the Gulf University for Science and Technology, Kuwait. KWMU (90.7 FM), which is the flagship National Public Radio station in the St. Louis area and known on-air as St. Louis Public Radio, is owned by and licensed to UMSL.

For the Fall 2023 semester, UMSL has 8,023 students attending classes on-campus, compared to 6,792 students taking classes off-campus, which is primarily students dual-enrolled at area high schools. The university has the equivalent of 5,654 full-time students. UMSL has historically been a commuter school for the St. Louis area.[16]


The impetus for a college campus in its current location began in 1957 when members of the Bellerive Country Club put their 53-year-old club house and 125-acre (50.6 ha) grounds on the market for $1.3 million as they planned to move to larger quarters in Town and Country, Missouri. At the same time members of Normandy, Missouri School District began debating the need of creating an affordable junior college to offer an alternative to the much more expensive privately owned Saint Louis University and Washington University in St. Louis. Country Club members approached the Board and the asking price was dropped to $600,000. A bond issue on September 30, 1958, received the necessary two-thirds majority and the golf club was turned over to Normandy on May 31, 1960. A group of board members and citizens popularly referred to as "The Committee of Twenty-eight" began the process to set up the junior college. The group met with Elmer Ellis, president of the University of Missouri.

At the time, MU was responsible for accrediting junior colleges. Ellis suggested that the University of Missouri supervise the educational program at the school. The terms required that 100 students attend the school. 140 students applied on the first day. The Clubhouse was renovated with 15 classrooms, two laboratories, a large lecture room, a library and a cafeteria. The "Normandy Residence Center under the auspices of the University of Missouri" opened in September 1960. Enrollment increased to 300 in 1961 and 550 in 1962.

Interest in a four-year school immediately arose. In 1963, the original MU campuses in Columbia and Rolla were merged with the privately owned University of Kansas City to form the present day University of Missouri System. The newly formed system immediately won permission to upgrade the Normandy center to a full-fledged four-year institution. The transfer from the Normandy school district to the University of Missouri System was delayed when the Missouri Supreme Court in 4–3 decision ruled that the school could not transfer the property without a formal open bid process. The Missouri General Assembly enacted legislation signed by Governor John Dalton on October 13, 1963, enabling the transfer and the university bought the property for $60,000 from unallocated funds at the university's disposal.[17]

With expanding enrollment classes were held in a laundromat building at Natural Bridge and Hanley and in a church basement across from the campus while buildings were built on the site of the former Bellerive Country Club. Benton Hall opened in 1965, Clark Hall and the Library were the next buildings built. On July 23, 1973, an Ozark Airlines Fairchild Hiller FH-227B Flight 809 from Nashville International Airport crashed into the campus just east of the Mark Twain complex while attempting to land at Lambert-St. Louis International Airport.[18][19] In 1976 Marillac College was acquired. It is now called the "south campus."


Dr. Thomas F. George, Chancellor Emeritus

Chancellors of the school are:[20]

  1. James L. Bugg Jr., 1965–1969
  2. Glen Driscoll, 1969–1972
    Everett Walters, interim, 1972–1973
  3. Joseph Hartley, 1973–1974
    Emery Turner, interim, 1974–1975
  4. Arnold Grobman, 1975–1985
    Arthur MacKinney, interim, 1985–1986
  5. Marguerite Ross Barnett, 1986–1990
  6. Blanche Touhill, 1990–2002
    Donald Driemeier, interim, 2003
  7. Thomas F. George, 2003–2019
  8. Kristin Sobolik, 2019–present

Express Scripts World Headquarters Campus at NorthPark[edit]

In 2007 Express Scripts opened its world headquarters on the campus north of University Place Drive and south of Interstate 70 in Missouri. It was the first Fortune 500 company to have its headquarters on a college campus. A second headquarters building adjoining the original one opened in 2008. Three additional Express Scripts have been added to the NorthPark development on the north side of I-70 including an Office and Data Center, Tech and Innovation Center, and Operations Center.[21] In 2018 the majority of the 5,000 St. Louis Express Scripts employees work in the complex.[21]

George Paz, CEO of Express Scripts at the time, was an UMSL graduate.[22] Express Scripts, which leases rather than owns its headquarters buildings and other structures in NorthPark, received substantial tax breaks.[23] Since the move the company has been an active partner with the university including contributing money to renovate the computer sciences building (Express Scripts Hall),[24] raising funds for building projects, sponsoring a pre-collegiate bridge program for high school students and sponsoring a business incubator (Accentuate).[25]


Provincial House, home of the Pierre Laclede Honors College

Academic units[edit]

Divisions of the university include the College of Arts and Sciences, the College of Business Administration, the College of Education, the College of Fine Arts and Communication, the College of Nursing, the College of Optometry, the Pierre Laclede Honors College, the School of Social Work, Continuing Education, the Graduate School, and the UMSL/Washington University Joint Undergraduate Engineering Program.

The College of Arts and Sciences has these divisions:

Research and public service centers[edit]

The university's centers include the Center for Business & Industrial Studies, the Center for Character and Citizenship, the Center for Emerging Technologies, the Center for Entrepreneurship and Economic Education, the Center for Ethics and Public Life, the Center for Eye Care, the Center for Excellence in Financial Counseling, the Center for Human Origin and Cultural Diversity, the Center for the Humanities, the Center for International Studies, the Center for Nanoscience, the Center for Neurodynamics, the Center for Transportation Studies, the Center for Trauma Recovery, the Children's Advocacy Services of Greater St. Louis, the E. Desmond Lee Regional Institute of Tutorial Education, the E. Desmond Lee Technology and Learning Center, the German Cultural Center, the International Business Institute, the Missouri Institute of Mental Health, the Nicholas and Theodora Matsakis Hellenic Culture Center, the Public Policy Research Center, St. Louis Public Radio, the Sue Shear Institute for Women in Public Life, and the Whitney R. Harris World Ecology Center.


  • U.S. News & World Report's America's Best Graduate Schools 2018 ranks its doctoral degree program in Criminology & Criminal Justice 5th in the US.[26] The Department of Criminology & Criminal Justice was also ranked 2nd for scholarly research by the Journal of Criminal Justice.[27]
  • The Philosophical Gourmet Report lists UMSL's terminal Master's program in Philosophy in the Top 10 nationally. This report is widely cited as a primary source in ranking Philosophy graduate programs and publishes biennially.[28]
  • U.S. News & World Report ranked the International Business Undergraduate program 15th for 2010. That was the 7th time the program was ranked in the Top 20.[29]


UMSL provides 11 Division II sports teams ranging from Soccer and Basketball to Golf and Softball.


The Campus is divided into two parts, a North Campus and a South Campus. UMSL can be visited using the St. Louis MetroLink light rail system which has two stations on the campus: UMSL North and UMSL South.

Some key buildings include the Thomas Jefferson and Mercantile Libraries, the Transportation Studies Center, University Meadows Apartments, the Millennium Student Center, Residential Life and Housing, Clark and Lucas Halls, the Touhill Performing Arts Center, Express Scripts Hall (formally CCB), and the Social Sciences Building. The Ward E. Barnes Library is located on the south campus and serves the College of Education and the College of Optometry. Finally, there is currently a campus recreation center.

Student life[edit]

Oak Hall, residential housing
The Millennium Student Center
Blanche M. Touhill Performing Arts Center


Campus housing: Villa North Hall (Ages 21+) and Oak Hall (under 21).

Additional campus living: University Meadows Apartments (independently operated, gated, apartment style living), the Mansion Hills (Ages 21+ )

Student Government Association[edit]

The UMSL Student Government Association (SGA) is a student run government set up to provide a voice for students when dealing with administration of the University of Missouri–St. Louis (UMSL). SGA has three parts, the Executive Branch, the Assembly, and the Student Court, and also is governed by a student wide approved constitution. SGA was started in 1963 when the university was founded and has gone through many constitutional changes, the most recent in 2004. SGA includes members from every student organization and students from every college on campus. This government incorporates both undergraduate and graduate in its student body. SGA has been instrumental in changes for students around the campus. It is responsible for approving student fees before they go to the board of curators of the University of Missouri System and divides out the campus Activity's Fees to fund student organizations' budgets.

Greek life[edit]

There are three social fraternities and sororities on campus. The Fraternity is Sigma Tau Gamma and the sororities are Delta Zeta and Zeta Tau Alpha.[30] The co-education service Fraternity is Alpha Phi Omega.

There are also historically Black Greek letter organizations (BGLO) that function at the University of Missouri St. Louis campus. Most of the BGLO chapters function as citywide chapters including Alpha Phi Alpha, Alpha Kappa Alpha, Kappa Alpha Psi, Omega Psi Phi, Delta Sigma Theta, Phi Beta Sigma, and Zeta Phi Beta, while Sigma Gamma Rho has a charter specifically at the University of Missouri St. Louis.

Student media[edit]

The student newspaper, The Current, is a tabloid publishing 6,000 issues weekly. It is funded primarily by advertising revenue supplemented by student activity fees. It won "Best-in-State" from the Missouri Collegiate Media Association in 2002, 2007, 2008, and 2009. The campus hosts a student radio station, UMSL Student Radio ("The U") on 1620 AM and streaming online and U TV which streams in the campus dorms and YouTube channel.[31] The main studios are located in the Millennium Student Center, with a satellite studio in the Oak Hall Residence. The stations is organized by the Student Electronic Media Professional's Association (SEMPA). The U has a non-commercial freeform format, playing various genres of music and talk shows as well as programs featuring campus news and personalities. The Film Production Society was established in 2006. This organization has since changed its name to The Media Production Society. It manufactures original content, tutors students in need, and researches new forms of modern media.

Nickname and mascot[edit]

In May 2007 the UMSL board of curators approved a change of nickname from the Rivermen (first used in the 1960s) to the Tritons. The new mascot was revealed at the 'Pack the Stands' night, Fall 2009 and was named Louie by the student body at the annual Mirthday celebration, Spring 2010. The Rivermen/Riverwomen nickname seldom had popular support, primarily for its unwieldy gender constructions.[32]

Institutional Safety[edit]

Law enforcement and emergency response on the UMSL campus is handled by the University of Missouri-St. Louis Police Department.

Other divisions within Institutional Safety include the Department of Environmental Health and Safety, Parking and Transportation, and Campus Locksmiths.

Pierre Laclede Honors College[edit]

The Pierre Laclede Honors College is the honors program for the University of Missouri–St. Louis. It was named in honor of the founder of the city of St. Louis. With classrooms and student housing both located in a former convent on the university's South Campus, the program offers classes that typically focus on specific topics in the Humanities while stressing the development and practice of students' writing skills. The students in the program publish an informal periodical, Brain Stew, which is independent of The Current. The college is also the center of activity for the publication of Bellerive, an annual literary magazine which contains artistic and literary works by UMSL students and faculty.


The university has 92,230 graduates, with 62,408 (68%) of them in the metropolitan St. Louis area.[33]

Notable faculty[edit]

Notable alumni[edit]


  1. ^ https://www.umsystem.edu/about-us/history Archived March 26, 2019, at the Wayback Machine umsystem about us
  2. ^ "UM Seal Guidelines and History". Curators of the University of Missouri. Archived from the original on November 29, 2010. Retrieved November 19, 2009.
  3. ^ "University of Missouri System Style Guide" (PDF). Curators of the University of Missouri. September 7, 2018. Archived (PDF) from the original on February 28, 2019. Retrieved February 27, 2019.
  4. ^ As of June 30, 2023. "Quarterly Performance Report" (PDF). University of Missouri System. October 2, 2023. Archived from the original (PDF) on November 3, 2023. Retrieved July 12, 2024.
  5. ^ As of June 30, 2023. "U.S. and Canadian 2023 NCSE Participating Institutions Listed by Fiscal Year 2023 Endowment Market Value, Change in Market Value from FY22 to FY23, and FY23 Endowment Market Values Per Full-time Equivalent Student" (XLSX). National Association of College and University Business Officers (NACUBO). February 15, 2024. Archived from the original on May 23, 2024. Retrieved July 12, 2024.
  6. ^ "Chancellor's Office". Umsl.edu.
  7. ^ a b "By the Numbers | Academic Affairs | University of Missouri St. Louis". www.umsl.edu. Retrieved August 19, 2019.
  8. ^ Facts and Figures (PDF) (Report). University of Missouri System. February 2024. Retrieved May 5, 2024.
  9. ^ "About UMSL". University of Missouri. 2013. Archived from the original on October 22, 2014. Retrieved October 22, 2014.
  10. ^ "Web Style Guide". Umsl.edu.
  11. ^ "Bellerive city, Missouri Archived August 26, 2009, at the Wayback Machine." U.S. Census Bureau. Retrieved on June 13, 2009.
  12. ^ "Bel-Nor village, Missouri Archived August 26, 2009, at the Wayback Machine." U.S. Census Bureau. Retrieved on June 13, 2009.
  13. ^ "Normandy city, Missouri Archived July 28, 2009, at the Wayback Machine." U.S. Census Bureau. Retrieved on June 13, 2009.
  14. ^ "UMSL's AACSB Accreditation". www.umsl.edu. Retrieved August 19, 2019.
  15. ^ "Carnegie Classifications Institution Lookup". carnegieclassifications.iu.edu. Center for Postsecondary Education. Retrieved September 13, 2020.
  16. ^ "Registrar Enrollment Reports". www.umsl.edu/. Retrieved June 3, 2024.
  17. ^ "St. Louis Research Center - The State Historical Society of Missouri". Umsl.edu.
  18. ^ "Accident Details". planecrashinfo.com. Archived from the original on December 23, 2007. Retrieved February 8, 2008.
  19. ^ Ranter, Harro. "ASN Aircraft accident Fairchild FH-227B N4215 Saint Louis-Lambert International Airport, MO (STL)". Aviation-safety.net.
  20. ^ "Former Chancellors". Umsl.edu.
  21. ^ a b Kirn, Jacob (March 8, 2018). "St. Louis job cuts seen in Cigna-Express Scripts deal: Analyst". St. Louis Business Journal.
  22. ^ "Express Scripts Chairman George Paz takes leadership of the Chancellor's Council at UMSL - UMSL Daily". Umsl.edu. February 19, 2018.
  23. ^ "The Current : Student Newspaper" (PDF). Umsl.edu. September 2005. Retrieved November 28, 2018.
  24. ^ "UMSL renames computer building Express Scripts Hall - UMSL Daily". Umsl.edu. February 28, 2011.
  25. ^ "Express Scripts". UMSL Accelerate. Archived from the original on March 11, 2018. Retrieved March 11, 2018.
  26. ^ "Best Criminology Programs | Top Criminology Schools – US News Best Graduate Schools". U.S. News & World Report. Retrieved August 8, 2018.
  27. ^ "UMSL Rankings and Honors". UMSL. Archived from the original on May 14, 2011. Retrieved May 13, 2011.
  28. ^ "The Philosophical Gourmet Report: M.A. Programs in Philosophy". Archived from the original on November 15, 2006.
  29. ^ "U.S. News & World Report's America's Undergraduate International Business Programs 2011". Colleges.usnews.rankingsandreviews.com.
  30. ^ "Community Conduct History | UMSL". www.umsl.edu. Retrieved May 29, 2023.
  31. ^ http://www.umslradio.com
  32. ^ "Rivermen washed away, chancellor approves Tritons – News". Thecurrentonline.com. Archived from the original on December 31, 2007. Retrieved November 5, 2007.
  33. ^ "UMSL Alumni". UMSL. Retrieved April 28, 2016.
  34. ^ "Ihsan A. Al-Shehbaz, Ph.D.", a profile at Missouri Botanical Garden
  35. ^ "UMSL grad returns as new business school dean". St. Louis Post-Dispatch. November 1, 2013.
  36. ^ "Council District Biography". December 3, 2014. Archived from the original on December 3, 2014.

External links[edit]

38°42′37″N 90°18′40″W / 38.710200°N 90.311055°W / 38.710200; -90.311055