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Sept. 10, 2021

MSU President, trustees commemorate start of academic year

Michigan State University leaders commemorated the start of the 2021-22 academic year at the first in-person meeting of the Board of Trustees since February 2020. 

During the meeting, MSU leaders highlighted the university’s preliminary fall semester enrollment projections, totaling 49,860 undergraduate, graduate and graduate/professional students, a slight increase over last year’s fall enrollment. The university’s final enrollment numbers will be made available on Sept. 27.

“We know students want to be here with us on campus, and that is evident by our enrollment this fall,” said MSU President Samuel L. Stanley Jr., M.D. “We have a record-breaking entering class this year, and I've enjoyed greeting many of them and our returning Spartans for the start of the new academic year.”

Following an update on enrollment and the start of the academic year, trustees authorized MSU to plan for the development of a multicultural center, a move that follows the completion of a feasibility study. The study developed a comprehensive framework for a campus multicultural center that would support the overall mission and goals of the university to foster a diverse, inclusive and equitable environment.

MSU is considering two locations for the center – integration into the existing International Center or a new building on the northeast corner of Shaw Lane and Farm Lane. Both options are in the central academic district. 

Other board activities included:

  • Endorsement and support of the MSU Strategic Plan 2030 – Empowering Excellence, Advancing Equity, Expanding Impact.
  • A presentation by Honglei Chen, MSU Foundation professor of epidemiology and biostatistics in the College of Human Medicine, on his current research focusing on the health of older adults and how losing their sense of smell may be an early indicator of Parkinson’s, dementia or other diseases.
  • Authorization to plan for improvements to and expansion of intercollegiate athletics football facilities, made possible through recent gifts to MSU Athletics.

The next board meeting will be on Oct. 29. 


By: Dan Olsen

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