MU announces academic restructuring of College of Human Environmental Sciences to simplify student major choices, encourage new research collaborations

Departments from College of Human Environmental Sciences will be merged into other schools with similar or complimentary subject areas.

Feb. 8, 2021
Contact: Christian Basi, 573-882-4430,

Today, University of Missouri officials announced the academic restructuring of the College of Human Environmental Sciences (HES) to simplify and align student major choices and to bring new research synergy that better responds to industry needs and student interests.

In doing so, departments from the college will merge with other schools and colleges across the campus in an effort to strengthen collaboration among researchers and provide greater opportunity for students to be exposed to connected and similar subject areas. This will help students better focus their career paths for the jobs of the future.

“Our recent investments in research and facilities and our expertise in the health sciences, for example, are helping us meet the evolving demand from both industry and prospective students,” said Mun Choi, president of the University of Missouri. “These consolidations will synergize research, learning and teaching in a manner that allows the whole to be greater than the sum of the parts.”

Latha Ramchand, provost and executive vice chancellor for Academic Affairs, said it was important to note that no academic programs are being closed with this action. Administrators believe these moves will strengthen the programs and provide students with more opportunities to collaborate with their peers in related fields. Currently, the restructuring is set to be effective Aug. 1, 2021.

Faculty and staff within the departments currently housed within HES will have the opportunity to provide input and feedback to the provost before any final decisions are made about the best academic homes for the departments. Those decisions are expected to be final within the next few weeks.

The departments include:

  • Nutrition and Exercise Physiology
  • Textile and Apparel Management
  • Human Development and Family Science
  • Personal Financial Planning
  • Architectural Studies

In addition to these departmental changes, the Office of Research and Economic Development and the Office of the Provost are working on a university-wide “cluster hire” strategy that will identify areas of opportunity for faculty recruitment while keeping in mind the overall strengths, goals and vision of the university.

“For example, one area we might implement a cluster hire in is the infectious disease research area,” Ramchand said. "Faculty recruited in this manner would be incentivized to work across departments and colleges on common and well-defined research problems.”


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