Student government representatives from all but one of Michigans publicly funded universities journeyed to Ann Arbor last weekend in hopes of re-establishing ties between their institutions.
Delegates from 14 schools, including MSU, met at the University of Michigan for the first official Association of Michigan Universities session. Northern Michigan University was the lone public school with no representation.
While there were plans for a number of issues to be addressed during the meeting, it was dominated by discussion about the associations purpose and basic organizational structure.
U-M wanted to use it for a central lobbying group, said Shane Waller, ASMSU Student Assembly external vice chairperson, But there was some reservations by universities because they only wanted to lobby on issues that the association will unanimously agree upon.
ASMSU is the universitys undergraduate student government.
One purpose of the association will be to ensure that state universities will have the support of other student governments when they look to tackle major student concerns, said Pati Lorf, a member of the Central Michigan University Student Government Association.
I think a lot of the times we are dealing with the same issues, Lorf said. If you get all 15 schools together on that issue, you will get more accomplished.
Waller, who attended the initial gathering with Matthew Clayson, a James Madison College representative for ASMSUs Academic Assembly, was selected as chairperson of the associations committee which will draft a constitution or charter for the next meeting slated to be held at Lake Superior State University in February.
We hope to have it done by the second week in January, so the other universities can look at it and make their own suggestions, Waller said.