Author Archives: tmiles

Alumni Association Develops Strategic Plan

The Truman Alumni Association’s mission is to foster and strengthen lifelong relationships between its remarkable alumni and friends. In order to achieve this mission, the Association recently adopted a five-year strategic plan. Among the top priorities are elevating diversity, equity and inclusion, defining the value of membership in Truman alumni chapters and using metrics to track progress on key priority areas. In the coming years, this plan will guide leaders and shape the way the Association develops events, communications and opportunities to better fit the needs of alumni and friends.

The strategic plan was designed to create a shared vision around three succinct strategies.

Strategic Priority #1
Connect alumni to each other

The Association will work to create social and professional connections through alumni chapters and clubs as well as less formal groups of alumni, such as former members of campus organizations.

Strategic Priority #2
Connect alumni to the University

For many, the Alumni Office is the primary connection back to campus. The Alumni Association will partner with campus offices to strengthen relationships, support students and foster lifelong learning.

Strategic Priority #3
Connect others to the University

Alumni are Truman’s best ambassadors. The Alumni Association will provide opportunities for alumni to recruit and retain future Bulldogs and to champion Truman spirit around the world.

Over the next five years, these strategies will provide a roadmap for alumni programming and communications to strengthen the connection of alumni to one another and to their alma mater.

Bulldog Forever

Bulldogs are passionate about their alma mater and excited to spread the word. There are plenty of ways to help recruit and support the next generation of Bulldogs.

// Refer a Student

Nobody knows Truman better than our alumni. Do you have family members, friends or neighbors who might be interested in pursuing the Truman experience? You can help recruit them by filling out our Refer-a-Student Form, and our Admissions Office will contact them at

// Welcome New Bulldogs to the Family

In 2021, Truman alumni began writing postcards to accepted students, welcoming them to campus and encouraging them for the year ahead. This program is a great way of making a difference in the lives of students as they prepare to come to Truman. All you have to do is submit an interest form, and we’ll contact you with the names and contact information for accepted students. Not entirely sure what you’d write? No worries! We’ll send you samples to help inspire you. Find the interest form at

// Alumni and Friends Spirit Program

As a tribute to Truman’s long history of teacher education, the University has developed the TruSpirit Program, offering educator alumni the opportunity to showcase their Truman spirit. The dedicated work of our educators truly shapes the coming generations. The TruSpirit Program equips alumni educators with Truman gear to display in their classrooms or offices, as well as information about the University. Request your TruSpirit packet online at

// Celebrate your Bulldog Forever Family

Truman is more than a university. It becomes family. For many alumni, that’s not just figuratively true. Many families have a proud Truman tradition that includes multiple generations of Bulldogs or several siblings attending and graduating from Truman. The commitment of these Bulldog Forever Families often spans decades and becomes a lasting and important part of Truman’s history. Do you have a Bulldog Forever Family story you’d like to share? We’d love to celebrate your family’s long-standing commitment to Truman.
Share your story and family photos online at

Connect // Hometown History Brings Kirksville to You

Even if you aren’t able to make it back to Kirksville, virtual programming is the perfect way to bring Kirksville to you. The Alumni Association recently hosted “Hometown History: A Virtual Tour of Truman and Kirksville Historic Places and Spaces.” Panelists Cole Woodcox, professor emeritus of English, Debi Boughton, retired Kirksville Tourism director, and Joshna Karki, student representative to the Alumni Board, took alumni and friends on a virtual tour of historic landmarks on campus and throughout northeast Missouri. A recording of the event is available online. Check it out, and take your own walk down memory lane and learn more about the history of campus and of Kirksville at

Connect // Alumni Reunion Services

Interested in planning an on-campus reunion? The Office of Advancement is here to help! Reunion Services helps provide resources for hosting on-campus gatherings. From fraternities and sororities to athletic teams or student organizations, this is your chance to reconnect with classmates. Contact the Office of Advancement for assistance securing locations, working with on-campus catering and promoting the event through mass email and online. To begin the process of planning your on-campus reunion, connect with us at

Connect // Make plans to come back to Kirksville!

Kirksville is an important part of the Truman experience. Countless memories have been made not just on campus but also at Thousand Hills, favorite haunts around the square and throughout the community. One of the best parts about visiting Kirksville is seeing how all your favorite things stayed the same, but also seeing new improvements come to town. Mark your calendar and pack your bags to make a trip back to Kirksville to see for yourself!

Investing in the Future

The St. Louis arch with blue sky and clouds behind itThe St. Louis McNair Scholarship will provide life-changing financial support for Truman students participating in the highly selective Ronald E. McNair Postbaccaulareate Achievement Program. A $400,000 donation from an anonymous alumni couple living in St. Louis established an endowed scholarship to provide a permanent source of funding.

Truman’s McNair Scholars Program is a federal TRIO initiative designed to address obstacles that prevent highly qualified students with strong academic potential from pursuing graduate degrees. Truman has continuously received this competitive funding since 1992 and offers academic and social support through faculty-mentored research experiences, holistic advising for graduate school preparation, peer-to-peer mentorship and paid summer research internships.

Named after NASA astronaut Dr. Ronald E. McNair, Truman’s McNair Program is dedicated to providing academically driven students from first-generation, low-income and minority backgrounds with opportunities to set high career goals in the spirit of McNair’s dedication to his own education.  McNair died on the Space Shuttle Challenger in January 1986, and his legacy lives on through the strengths, hard work and successes of McNair Scholars at Truman and across the United States.

Currently, 85% of Truman’s McNair scholars qualify as low-income. This unique scholarship will provide help for talented students who may not otherwise graduate or attend graduate school without financial assistance. The scholarship is available in their junior year and renewable for seniors progressing through the program. The timing allows students to focus on undergraduate research experiences and graduate application preparation and submission without the burden of taking on additional debt or working long hours while in classes to afford education expenses.


377 Scholars served who are now Truman alumni

82% Truman McNair Program alumni have completed or are currently enrolled in graduate programs

18% attained doctoral degrees

34 McNair Scholars served in 2021-2022

An April to Remember

April 21 is National Bulldogs are Beautiful Day. It’s also a day Truman alumni, family and friends give back and support the next generation of beautiful Bulldogs.

Total raised in 24 hours

282 donors

Average donation $254

73% donated more than $60 and got Truman socks!

This year, members of the Alumni Board, Board of Governors and Foundation Board donated more than $35,000 in matching funds. Dollar-for-dollar matches to any Foundation fund were available. Additionally, there were four special giving opportunities to support important campus initiatives.

The Big Event, a Truman tradition since 2001, sends students to serve in the Kirksville community each spring. Through the generosity of Colleen Ritchie (’84) $5,000 in matching funds were available for donations from young alumni. All money raised will fund the purchase of T-shirts and breakfast for the students participating in 2023 and grow the Truman spirit of service.

Bulldog Student Investment Fund (BSIF), founded by generous donors in the fall of 2011, is composed of undergraduate members from a diverse background of majors assembled to conduct equity analysis and make investments for the benefit of the Truman State University Foundation. Through the generosity of Mindy McCubbin (’97) and Tony (’99, ’00) and Julie (’00) Marek matching funds totaling $16,000 were available to benefit the experiential learning of these student analysts.    

Research Experience for Undergraduates in Biochemistry and Genetics, a new initiative made possible through the generosity of Dr. Sharron Quisenberry (’66), provided a $15,000 match to help fund undergraduate science research. Students will explore specific topics in depth and even make original contributions to an area of study – conducting their own research, collaborating with faculty members or working with other undergraduates to seek a better understanding of the world.

The Women’s Basketball Locker Room will be fully renovated thanks to the generosity of donors. With construction happening in Pershing Building since June 2021, the women’s basketball team endured an entire season without their normal space. This fund will replace lockers and couches, provide new graphics and more.

Foundation Celebration

The Annual Truman State University Foundation Celebration took place April 9.

The Foundation Celebration is Truman’s signature Foundation event providing an opportunity for the campus community to express gratitude for the most loyal and generous donors. KPMG was presented the Distinguished Corporation/Foundation Award for their strong partnership with the University and the School of Business. Maj. Gen. John V. Cox (’52) and Mrs. Patricia (McMichael) Cox were presented with the President’s Leadership Award, one of the most prestigious honors bestowed by Truman. The President’s Leadership Award honors select Truman alumni and friends for meritorious service through their gifts of volunteerism, expertise and financial resources. In addition to these distinguished awards, more than 100 benefactors were recognized as new members of the University’s prestigious giving societies.

For a listing of all of Truman’s giving societies, go to

Amazing Impact

Thanks to a gift from Dr. Pete Goldman, professor emeritus of biology, the University Farm has increased its ability to provide fresh produce for students and community members, enhanced sustainability efforts on campus and provided additional educational opportunities for students.

Since 2011, the greenhouse at the University Farm has provided fresh local produce to Sodexo and the Adair County Food Pantry. The new greenhouse space provides nearly four times the capacity for students to grow fresh fruits and vegetables all year long.

Goldman taught biology at Truman for 44 years. In 2008, he established a scholarship through the Truman State University Foundation for students in biology. The Evolution, Ecology and Conservation Scholarship fund, designed to provide scholarships in perpetuity, has provided nearly $18,000 in support to date. His most recent gift to the Foundation has provided for construction of additional greenhouse space. An avid hiker and bird watcher, Goldman is a community leader in the promotion of sustainability and environmental issues.

The current greenhouse is highly successful, having a low loss rate. By reducing the need to transport outside produce in to Kirksville, the greenhouse makes a significant impact on sustainability and provides learning opportunities for students. The main focus of the University greenhouse operation, however, is to make sure the dining halls and food pantry get enough quality produce.

“To me, the new greenhouse space makes the whole University slightly more sustainable,” Goldman said. “The food is produced locally, it’s organic and it goes from farm to table in the blink of an eye.”

To learn more about matching your philanthropic interests with University efforts, contact the Office of Advancement at (660) 785-4133 or