Thursday, April 15, 2004Michigan Student Assembly Update
- MSA is holding what they're calling an "unprecedented mass meeting" tonight at 7:00 PM in MSA chambers.
- Laban King, a black member of the Michigan Student Assembly, has resigned - saying it's not the place for minorities: (Daily: "MSA rep resigns, says assembly not place for minorities")
- My comments about MSA's refusal to appoint Teri Russiello has sparked some feedback. First, I was informed by a few people the Daily article didn't make sense because it neglected to note that she was not appointed because there was someone else running against her for the position of MSA Treasurer - none other than former Vice Presidential Candidate Anita Leung. Here's to correspondence - first, from someone who attended the meeting:
"I went to that msa meeting last night ... another thing about the treasurer position was that Anita Leung applied and she ran against Jason and Jenny for VP in the last election ... some people thought she was more qualified 'cause she had served on BPC for 3 semester and was vice chair last semester. I think the thing that separated the treasurer position from the others was that for the other position there was not an rejectee who seemed to be more qualified on paper than the eventual person picked. Jessie Levine was the only person who applied for the Student General Counsel position and Elliot Reid applied for Chief of Staff along with Anita."
The other commentary is from Teri Russiello herself:
I just wanted to quickly respond to a few things. My decision to run for MSA Treasurer was purely out of my dedication to serving the student body at the University of Michigan. The budget cuts are going to effect every student at the University and it would have been my honor to be a link between the student body, student groups, MSA reps, and the administration. However, for reasons described as "political", my efforts to fulfill those goals will not be as an MSA exec. By no means does this hurdle hinder these goals. Truthfully, I can see where the Assembly viewed my appoint as a "reward" for the amount of work invested into Student's First last semester. However, neither my application nor my interview reflected any experiences of past MSA campaigns. Instead, I chose to focus on a very detailed plan for combating the budget cuts, ideas on minimizing MSA's cost while maximizing efficiency, and creating the community cohesiveness necessary for a successful Assembly. While serving my term on MSA, the Budget Priorities Committee was not my choice
of involvement because my major focus on the Assembly was co-chairing the Women's Issues Commission (and yes, WIC has to balance a budget). I should not be penalized or scrutinized for that decision because I gained comparable
experience elsewhere and maintained my promise to advocate for one of my communities. I will not repeat the other qualifications stated in Tuesday's meeting but I will say that I was confident in my application and desire to be
Treasurer. I welcome any questions or comments. Thank you very much."
Posted by Rob at 4:53 PM