A birthday celebration doubled as a low-key pep rally Tuesday to mark the University of Missouri-Kansas City’s turning 80 this year.
Inside Swinney Recreation Center and in front of a few hundred of UMKC’s closest friends and stakeholders, Chancellor Leo Morton, Gov. Jay Nixon, Mayor Sly James, philanthropists, civic leaders, faculty and students re-enacted the June 10, 1929, signing of the charter that started the University of Kansas City.
The first classes, with 260 students, were held in 1933.
Today, the university has more than 100,000 alumni, more than 16,000 students, nearly 160 acres and 60 buildings.