In an editorial in its latest edition, The Chart, MSSU's newspaper, tackles the issue
The editorial notes Speck's misleading use of the terms "data" and "benchmarking" to apply to the international mission turning it into a drinking game in which a drink is taken each time one of those two words is mentioned:
And what about benchmarks? (Drink.)
Speck said when he came to Southern he asked what about the international mission was benchmarked (drink), and that the concept was foreign to the University.
Well, we checked with the University's Institute of International Studies and learned that Southern sends more students abroad each year than the University of Central Missouri, Pittsburg State University and West Texas A&M (despite Dr. Brian Chapman's claims). Southern offers more foreign languages than most Universities our size. Southern is the only institution in the nation to have a themed semester program.
Students who attend this University have a great opportunity to learn about and be exposed to other cultures and people. How do you back that up with data (drink)? The problem is the numbers show the international mission is worthwhile, and is working, and it seems Speck doesn't want to hear that.
And, like asking a person to quantify love, will we now ask how much "football"or "basketball" or "cross country" is every student receiving? Are you getting enough Greek life? It can't be measured. And it shouldn't be
The editorial ends with the comment that Speck is determined to drive the students to drink.
The attacks on the international mission are at the core of the reason why former Board of Governors Chairman Dwight Douglas brought Speck to MSSU. Speck, at the behest of President Sherry Hoppe, also targeted international programs at Austin Peay. That alone was probably the reason why the decision was made to interview only one person for a position as important as the presidency of Missouri Southern State University.