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Students advocate for campus change during ASMSU Town Hall

February 22, 2023
<p>Maeve Denshaw, President of MSU outdoor club speaking at the Student Town Hall Meeting and Discussion held at Bessey Hall on Feb. 21, 2023.</p>

Maeve Denshaw, President of MSU outdoor club speaking at the Student Town Hall Meeting and Discussion held at Bessey Hall on Feb. 21, 2023.

Photo by Denille Reid | The State News

The Associated Students of MSU, or ASMSU, hosted a town hall where anyone could speak on how their feelings and what they wanted to share with Michigan State administration following the mass shooting on Feb. 13

“I am so glad to provide you with a space to be able to voice your concerns about what is happening around campus," ASMSU president Jo Kovach said

Not only were students and representatives invited to this town hall, but members of Michigan State’s faculty and staff were also able to say a few words to the community.

The vice president for public safety and chief of police for MSU Marlon Lynch gave his insight onto the topic at hand.

“We definitely have thoughts and ideas on how we can proceed but we are not going to proceed without feedback from our community,” Lynch said. “This is our home. This is our campus.” 

Students and representatives were given the chance to speak on public safety, academic support, mental health and counseling in an open forum about any and all feelings they might have.

“If you have mobility issues, you cannot get into every building on campus," Madeleine 'Poppins' Tocco, the ASMSU representative for the council of students with disabilities at MSU said. "If you cannot get into every building on campus, you cannot get away from a shooter." 

Students also brought up issues like lack of blinds on the windows into classrooms, easy access into all academic buildings and absence of PA systems throughout buildings.

“They have no way of being able to inform all the patrons in (the Union) of any emergency situation that may be happening outside of a fire,” University Activities Board, or UAB, coordinator Andrew Miller Thomas said

Michigan State students also called for administration to rethink the return to school initiatives that have been put in place so far. ASMSU public relations manager Brandi Stover said what MSU does now could impact other universities down the road

“There is not necessarily a plan that can fit everyone, but I think one of the biggest things is letting professors know that we need flexibility and letting professors know that something within their agenda needs to change,” UAB and ASMSU member Devin Woodruff said.

Students are looking to administration for more answers about the school year going forward and the flexibility provided from teachers.

“My very best friend here went to Oxford High School,” Freshman class council secretary Melinda Bronk said. “(She) not only lived through one school shooting, but she lived through two and was expected to go to class on the Monday after, the week after a situation. That happened and it's completely unacceptable.”

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