Missouri State University tonight unveiled the secret of its monthslong "It's On" marketing initiative: a $250 million capital campaign led by actor and alumnus John Goodman.
Goodman is serving as campaign chairman for the new Onward Upward project, according to a news release. The largest fundraising campaign in MSU's history, the initiative so far has raised more than $150 million from nearly 50,000 donors during the so-called quiet phase of the campaign.
“I owe Missouri State,” Goodman said in an interview prior to the announcement at Juanita K. Hammons Hall for the Performing Arts. “My life started here.”
Funding brought in by the MSU Foundation is earmarked for facilities, programs, faculty and scholarships.
The Onward Upward campaign includes a mix of new and previously announced projects:
• expansion of IDEA Commons that includes a 30,000-square-foot addition to the Jordan Valley Innovation Center and a rooftop event space at the Robert W. Plaster Free Enterprise Center;
• construction of a permanent Tent Theatre;
• three new buildings, such as a livestock show barn, for the Darr College of Agriculture;
• a student-managed investment fund;
• the renovation of the Professional Building;
• over 200 new student scholarships;
• the Davis-Harrington Welcome Center;
• Greenwood Laboratory School expansion;
• Bill & Lucille Magers Family Health & Wellness Center; and
• the Betty and Bobby Allison Recreation and Intramural Field.
For the debut event, MSU also brought to town David Glass, alumnus and owner of the Kansas City Royals, and Clay Harbor, a former NFL player and linebacker for the Missouri State Bears who appeared on the 14th season of "The Bachelorette."
Over 2,000 people attended the event, with giveaways, fireworks and entertainment provided.
Along with Goodman, other campaign members are:
• Tim Foote;
• Matt Harthcock;
• Gordon Kinne;
• Bryan Magers;
• Mark McQueary;
• Mike Minor;
• Anna Marie Presutti;
• Mary Schrag; and
• Susan Sims-Giddens.
Sophomores Jesse Romano and Katie Sulzner plan to continue their small-business venture at least through college.
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