AP NEWS

Missouri Southern drops plans for dental school

September 21, 2018

JOPLIN, Mo. (AP) — Missouri Southern State University has abandoned plans for a dental school that would’ve operated in partnership with the University of Missouri-Kansas City.

Missouri Southern President Alan Marble announced Thursday that the schools jointly decided to drop the project because state funding was minimal, the Joplin Globe reported.

The universities had been collaborating since 2010 on the project to create a dental school on Missouri Southern’s campus in Joplin. The schools requested state money to fund the project in fiscal year 2017, but most of the funding was withheld and hasn’t been available since then.

Missouri Southern had requested $3 million, while UMKC requested $1.5 million.

“This year, the appropriation was reduced to such small amounts that we met with our partners at the University of Missouri System and jointly decided to abandon the project,” Marble said.

The recent decision could lead the Kansas City University of Medicine and Biosciences to pursue a dental program of its own. KCU announced in June that it would consider creating a College of Dental Medicine in the Joplin area. The university already launched a feasibility study for the project to explore regional needs, funding sources, accreditation options and potential partnerships.

Marc Hahn, KCU’s president, said that he wanted the school to be “in a position to move forward” with the dental program if the MSSU-UMKC collaboration didn’t receive funding.

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Information from: The Joplin (Mo.) Globe, http://www.joplinglobe.com

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