You pay $7.19 a semester for University-wide student government. The Michigan Vision Party believes that your student government should listen to your ideas and your vision and deliver for you. MVP believes that MSA should deliver real, tangible results rather than lofty, unrealistic rhetoric. That’s why we have worked to make MSA a body where student visions are realized.
After being elected into office last year, MVP representatives delivered on many of the visions we heard from you. MVP representatives led Go Blue, Beat OSU Week, the “Block M” at Michigan Stadium, MSA Mondays (with free bagels and coffee), this month’s all-campus concert (featuring Wale, Big Sean and the Clipse) and the Campus Leadership Colloquium for student organization leaders. We increased student organization funding by 17 percent, helped to draft the new all-campus constitution (which will make student government more effective and efficient), encouraged professors to post course syllabi early in registration and reformed MSA meetings to ensure that only student issues are addressed. We know how to move MSA forward. We’re proud of our record and the progress we’ve made in MSA.
While we’ve made progress, there have been setbacks. The website fiasco clearly stands out as a major failure. Though setbacks occur when we try to make progress, they present new opportunities to improve. We see this as an opportunity to make MSA more transparent and accountable through reevaluating how money is disbursed from the executive board.
But we’re not here to dwell on the past. Rather than looking backwards, we’re ready to present a vision to move MSA forward.
We want MSA to continue to put on events for the student body. Students have told us that they want more pep rallies and concerts. Our vision is to have pep rallies before major football games, before December’s Big Chill at the Big House, and even to have pep rallies for smaller sports that don’t usually get much attention. Building off what we’ve learned in planning this month’s MSA and Big Ticket Productions Concert, we’d like MSA to continue collaborating with other student organizations to put on big events. We’d love to try to bring in a big name artist who appeals to a wide range of the campus community. We also want to continue to provide the popular Airbus airport service, which is currently at risk due to staffing changes.
We want to increase communication between MSA and students. Very few people know what MSA does, and students deserve to know what their government is doing and where their money is being spent. By taking action like installing bulletin boards in residence halls and academic buildings, we can bridge the gap between students and MSA. We’d also like to make executives and representatives more accessible.
Building off the success of MSA Mondays, we want to bring better Office Hours to students. We’d also like to create an MSA Live Online Help Desk, an instant messaging/Gchat account managed by execs and reps to answer questions from students. We have a large, decentralized campus that presents problems to students trying to find resources. MSA should be the medium that connects students with each other and the resources they need on campus.
We want to continue to assist student organizations. Student organizations enhance the student experience here at Michigan, and it’s important that they have a government that supports and assists them. Going along with our effort to improve MSA communication, we’d like to increase communication with student organizations by requiring executives and representatives to provide updates at student organization meetings.
One of MSA’s main functions is to serve as a funding body. We plan to cut the waste in MSA’s budget to ensure that there is even more money available to student organizations than there is now. We’d also like to streamline the funding process by creating a common application that can be used by all University funding bodies. This will create uniform standards and make the funding process much easier for student organizations. We also want to increase collaboration between MSA and student organizations. This month’s concert is a great example of MSA and a student organization coming together to plan a major event. MSA can and should do more collaborative events to enhance the Michigan experience.
We didn’t just reach into different communities to get our ideas, we’ve gone around campus asking, “What’s your vision?” We’ve shaped our vision around your vision for MSA. This isn’t just our party’s vision, this is the Michigan Vision.
Ian Margolis and Tom Stuckey are the MVP presidential and vice presidential candidates. John Lin is the MVP Message Chairman.