Monday, November 28, 2022

EDITORIAL: We, too, have lost all confidence in the Board of Trustees

President Samuel L. Stanley Jr. and Board of Trustees Chair Dianne Byrum stand at the podium in room 401 of the Hannah Administration Building, preparing for the media availability.
President Samuel L. Stanley Jr. and Board of Trustees Chair Dianne Byrum stand at the podium in room 401 of the Hannah Administration Building, preparing for the media availability. —
Photo by Morgan Womack | The State News

MSU is in turmoil. 

President Samuel L. Stanley Jr. has resigned, leaving us with an incompetent, ineffective Board of Trustees. 

The faculty senate, student government and the university council have all passed votes of no confidence toward the Board of Trustees before Stanley’s resignation. MSU leaders and professors have reprimanded the board’s behaviors. Even high-profile politicians have weighed in. 

And yet, the board has not owned up to its lack of transparency. 

We still don’t know the full reason why Stanley’s contract was under discussion. We’ve done our best as a student publication to bring you the answers. Believe us, we’re still trying, but we need the board to give the MSU community the transparency it needs.

Students are confused. A total of four presidents will have served over just a five-year period at this university. But something we wish to emphasize through our coverage: Stanley’s resignation has a different tone.

His predecessors also resigned surrounding controversy over Title IX, but they were called out for upholding Title IX violations, not striving to come into compliance. Before Stanley’s resignation, controversy surrounded the business school dean’s removal and the failure to certify the Title IX compliance form.

Stanley said he supported the provost’s decision to remove the dean and that the board was to blame for the failure in the Title IX certification. He’s made his position clear, so why is he the one resigning? 

We’re having a hard time finding fault in Stanley’s decisions in these controversies. It seems like the fault lies on the Board of Trustees. 

If that’s not the case, we wouldn’t know — this board has failed to be transparent once again. Despite our in-depth reporting, many questions are still unanswered. 

Elections are coming up. Michiganders have the opportunity to elect two members to join our Board of Trustees. We’ve got you covered with articles on every angle of the trustees, including the four candidates on your ballot. We encourage you to research and see who you want to fill these seats. 

If the board has the power to shove a president out for seemingly following the rules, we should be wary of who we are putting in these positions of power. 

Which candidate deserves MSU’s support? What do they stand for? 

The board itself needs some type of evaluation. The best place for that to come from is the public, at the ballot box.

Like the students, faculty and our president, we have lost confidence in the Board of Trustees as it is currently. 

The State News Editorial Board comprises Editor-in-Chief SaMya Overall, Managing Editor Dina Kaur, City Editor Drew Goretzka, Culture Editor Miranda Dunlap, Sports Editor Sam Sklar, Copy Chief Claire Grant, Multimedia Editors Devin Anderson-Torrez and Rahmya Trewern, Social Media Manager Lauren Snyder, Staff Rep. Maddy Warren and Diversity Rep. Jada Vasser.

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