Thursday, May 23, 2024

ASMSU passes bill encouraging creation of memorial bench

April 7, 2023
Thousands gathered at the Rock on Farm Lane on Wednesday, Feb. 16, 2023 to remember Brian Fraser, Alexandria Verner and Arielle Anderson, the three victims of Michigan State University’s mass shooting on Feb. 13.
Thousands gathered at the Rock on Farm Lane on Wednesday, Feb. 16, 2023 to remember Brian Fraser, Alexandria Verner and Arielle Anderson, the three victims of Michigan State University’s mass shooting on Feb. 13.

Typically, the 100th bill in each Associated Students of MSU session is looked at as more of a light topic, but this year it was different.

“It's something that combines the entire session back together," ASMSU President Jo Kovach said.

Bill 59-100 proposed that ASMSU use its funds to provide MSU Infrastructure, Planning and Facilities with money to build a memorial in the form of a bench that honors the lives of the victims of the tragic events of Feb. 13.

“I wanted something to memorialize not only the students we lost, but like the innocence that we all lost that day as well,” Kovach said. “And the normalcy that we all lost as well.”

Vice President for Internal Administration Carl Austin Miller Grondin said this bill was inspired by the recent strength in the community.

“We all went through this together," Grondin said. "And I've never seen a community come together as it has in the last two months.”

Stand-in representative Daniel Zivian said he encourages next year's students to push further on trying to give the bench a symbolic significance.

Representatives encouraged each other to be thoughtful in thinking about how the students lost should be remembered.

“It is so easy for students to start new traditions and that's really what I want to see, with like this bench," Kovach said. "It can be a place where we start leaving the flowers.”

This bill was passed with a unanimous vote within the general assembly. Representatives added in amendments regarding collaboration on the placement of the memorial from students, faculty and all those affected by this tragedy.

“As soon as we get permission, we'll pass it on to you all and we can have a discussion about this,” Vice President for Finance and Operations Vipul Adusumilli said.

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