Former MSA President Jason Mironov called the last MSA meeting of his term to order last night at 7:30 p.m. and passed the torch on to MSA President Jesse Levine. Though the new administration had not even been sworn in, constituents brought issues for the next year to the attention of the assembly from the start of the meeting.
Jennifer Holmes, director of Operations for University Hospitals and Health Centers, voiced concern with part of Levine’s platform that emphasized increased privacy for students who were admitted to the hospital for alcohol-related incidents.
Members of the assembly had voiced concerns about minors being afraid to seek treatment, due to fear of being turned over to police or the Department of Public Safety.
Holmes assured the assembly that privacy was at the foundation of all policies of the University’s hospitals and health centers.
“I want students to be secure in knowing that if they come to the hospital for care for any reason, that their case will be held in the utmost confidentiality,” Holmes said. “We protect the confidentiality of all our patients, including students, and there is no reporting to any University officials.”
Levine said he was pleased to hear this, but that he wanted to ensure that past infringements of student privacy were not repeated.
“Privacy laws need to be respected at the U of M Hospital, and I’m glad to hear that the policy at the U of M. hospital respects those laws. However, I am troubled to hear that there was an instance in which a students privacy rights may have been infringed upon,” Levine said. “I’d like to make sure that such aberrations do not happen in the future,” he said.
These early points of clarification did not bring any doubt about Levine’s ability from Mironov.
“I have the utmost faith in Jesse, and I hope he and the assembly lead and serve this campus to the best of their ability,” Mironov said.
These sentiments echoed Mironov’s motto for Levine, and the job of MSA president, “Loved, hated, but never ignored.”
Mironov emphasized that while everyone may not have always agreed with his decisions, that he always acted with what he believed to be the best interest of the students.
Former MSA Chief of Staff Elliott Wells-Reid had similar advice for the next administration.
“Remember that your job here is to represent the students, and not to forget to put students first when making all decisions,” Wells-Reid said.
Levine said he was eager to start his term and looked forward to an ambitious year as president.
“MSA is on a total and complete upswing, and I’m excited about the future. I look forward to working with fellow students, the administration and the new assembly.”
Mironov emerged from the meeting ready to pass the torch on to Levine, his friend and former general counsel.
“The road was hard, the friends were good and being president of MSA was the greatest honor and responsibility I have had so far,” Mironov said.