(Kansas City) (AP) – The University of Missouri-Kansas City’s business school racked up a nearly $11 million operating deficit in its effort to boost enrollment, the latest blow to the school.
An internal audit raised concerns about the Henry W. Bloch School of Management’s deficit and called for better internal controls over travel and expense budgets, The Kansas City Star reported.
The report follows an earlier audit requested by Gov. Jay Nixon after an investigation by The Star found faculty members submitted false data as a means to get the Bloch School’s entrepreneurship program in the Princeton Review’s top rankings. Both audits cover roughly the same time frame, fiscal years 2009-2014.
The report by PricewaterhouseCoopers auditing firm shows the Bloch School’s operating deficit increased more than 600 percent in the past five years, from $1.5 million in 2009 to $10.6 million in the fiscal year that ended June 30, 2014.
UMKC spokeswoman Stacy Downs said the Bloch School has been able to balance its budget each year with help from the university’s reserve fund, and the $10.6 million deficit eventually will be repaid from the school’s revenue. Total revenue for the school in fiscal 2014 was $19.4 million.
“It’s not out of the ordinary for an academic unit to run a deficit on occasion, based on a variety of factors from enrollment shifts to state funding decreases to program investments,” Downs told the newspaper by email.
Auditors said the core of the Bloch School’s problem was that projected revenue increases didn’t keep pace with added expenses, such as new, higher-paid faculty members, aimed at boosting the number of tuition-paying students. Former dean Teng-Kee Tan set a goal of doubling enrollment at the Bloch School during his five years there, but enrollment rose only 21 percent between 2009 and 2014, the audit said. Tan retired last year and wasn’t available for comment to the newspaper.
Officials at other area universities, including Kansas State and the University of Kansas School of Business, told the newspaper it isn’t their practice to operate on a deficit.
The audit Nixon requested mirrored The Star’s findings that Bloch School faculty took shortcuts and submitted false or misleading information to achieve higher rankings. Two faculty members resigned and the school’s entrepreneurship program was stripped of four years’ worth of rankings.
UMKC Chancellor Leo Morton has apologized for the lapses committed during his watch and vowed that the Bloch School is reforming its practices.
(Willow Springs) – Route 17 in Howell and Texas Counties will be reduced to one lane next week as Missouri Department of Transportation crews partially overlay the roadway.
The section of roadway is located from Highway 60 in Howell County to Route 106 in Texas County.
Weather permitting, work will be performed Tuesday, April 21 through Thursday, April 23 from 7 AM to 4:30 PM daily.
The work zone will be marked with signs, and motorists are urged to use extreme caution while traveling near the area.
(Pomona) – Pomona Christian Church will be offering a free summer archery program.
The PCC Archery program is an 8-week program offered on Monday and Tuesday nights for kids in 3rd grade and up. All experience levels are welcome.
There will be 4 classes in all, divided by age, and all equipment is provided. Spacing is limited for each age range so sign up now.
For dates and more information go to www.pomonachristian.com or call 417-293-3256.
(Ash Flat) – The Sharp County Historical Society Spring Quarterly Meeting will be held on Sunday, April 26, at 2 PM at the First National Banking Company Community Room, Ash Flat, Arkansas.
The guest speaker will be Patricia Allmon French, who will be presenting the program, “Ozarks Wild Edibles,” which features information on several Ozarks wild edible plants, the historical uses of plants, and Ozark folklore.
Patricia grew up in the Ozarks and lived her early years in the Irish Wilderness in Oregon County, and along the Eleven Point River. Her mother and grandmothers taught her much about edible and medicinal plants from the time she could walk and talk. Her plant education experience continued in her work environment. Patricia worked 26 years in natural resources for the Missouri Department of Conservation.
She has participated and held leadership roles in many plant and Ozarks culture related groups including the Ozarks Native Plant Society, Herb Society of America, and The Ozarks Folk Cultural Commission.
She is a well known speaker and has a passion for the plants and culture of the Ozarks. Patricia currently works as an Interior Designer for The Grapevine, Ash Flat, Arkansas.
(Melbourne) – Arkansas Community Colleges (ACC) is once again offering the Academic All-Star scholarship program to students of two-year colleges in the state.
The purpose of the Academic All-Star program is to recognize the scholarly and service achievements of Arkansas’ two-year college students. Academic All-Stars will be recognized at the ACC Awards Brunch on Tuesday, October 13, in Hot Springs, Arkansas.
The deadline to apply is May 22.
To be eligible for consideration, a student must be an Arkansas resident, currently enrolled at Ozarka College and expect to be enrolled at Ozarka College through at least fall 2015, have completed a minimum of 24 credit hours in pursuit of an associate degree by June 1, have the intent to graduate from Ozarka College with an associate degree by summer 2016, and have a cumulative grade point average of 3.25 in all credit coursework completed at Ozarka College.
For more information, please contact Ron Helm, Vice President of Student Services, at 870-368-2027 or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
(Jefferson City) – TJ Fiske and Alaina Smith, of the Summersville FFA Chapter, helped in the Missouri FFA press room
at the 87th Missouri FFA Convention editing news releases. The media room distributes hundreds of news releases to media outlets throughout the state.
The Springfield News-Leader reports that 29-year-old Michael M. Speed was originally charged with murder and armed criminal action in the death of Christopher Williams. But prosecutors agreed to a plea deal with Speed after a key witness couldn’t be found. Earlier this month, Speed entered an Alford plea to involuntary manslaughter. In an Alford plea, a defendant does not admit to committing the crime but acknowledges the prosecutors have enough evidence for a conviction.
Prosecuting attorney Todd Myers said police and U.S. Marshals were unable to find the missing witness. Speed had told police he was defending himself.
Williams had brothers who were fatally shot in Arkansas in 2006 and 2010.
(New Madrid) (AP) – A former teacher has been charged with possessing child pornography.
The Standard Democrat reports that 36-year-old Amy R. Walker, of Lilbourn, Missouri, posted bond Thursday. Walker was a teacher at the New Madrid County Central Middle School before resigning earlier this month.
Her attorney, Curtis Poore, didn’t immediately return a phone message from The Associated Press.
Court records say the investigation began after the mother of a student informed authorities her son had received nude pictures from Walker. The pictures were discovered by the student’s girlfriend while looking through his phone.
The probable cause statement said Walker admitted to sending three nude pictures of herself. The student stated he also sent an explicit photo. As a condition of her bond, Walker is prohibited from having contact with unrelated minors.
(Houston) – There will be a Tickled Pink Survivors breast cancer support group meeting on Monday, April 20 at 5:30 PM inside the Timmons Education Room at Texas County Memorial Hospital in Houston.
Deborah Belt-Kell, professional counselor at Texas County Memorial Hospital, is facilitating the support group.
The meeting will be held at 5:30 PM, and is open to anyone who has had or is currently seeking treatment for breast cancer. No reservations are required.
For more information, contact Kell at 417-967-1322.
(Sikeston) – Route JJ in Shannon County will be closed next week as Missouri Department of Transportation crews perform bridge repairs.
The bridge located over the Castro Valley Creek is between County Road JJ-350 and County Road K-349. Weather permitting, work will take place Monday, April 20 from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m.
The work zone will be marked with signs and motorists are urged to use extreme caution while traveling near the area.