ASNMU Update – SAM conference budget approved during ASNMU meeting

Margaret Ylitalo

A $350 budget was approved for an upcoming Student Association of Michigan (SAM) conference at the Monday, Nov. 1 ASNMU meeting. The budget will cover two nights in a hotel and gas costs. The conference will take place Saturday, Nov. 6 and Sunday, Nov. 7 at Lake Superior State University in Sault Ste. Marie, Mich.

ASNMU members voted against taking $70 off of the budget for the SAM conference to allow those who attend to stay Saturday night only instead of Saturday and Sunday nights in a hotel. SAM conference attendees socialize and familiarize themselves with the weekend’s discussion items on Friday night prior to the conference.

ASNMU also discussed the possibility of not attending every other SAM conference in person. ASNMU would still have voting rights via webcam or through a conference call if no one attended, said Lucia Lopez, president of ASNMU.

Off-campus representative Dani Thoune opened a discussion about restarting an External Affairs Committee, which would include a chair, a local affairs liaison and a legislative affairs liaison. External Affairs Committee members would connect ASNMU to the greater community. The External Affairs Committee has never been discontinued, but was not begun again this year, Thoune said.

Treasurer Andrew Foster read off of the bylaws, “The External Affairs Committee is responsible for monitoring the progress of key legislative items at local, state and federal levels of the government. These issues are to be monitored on an ongoing basis to keep ASNMU informed about important issues relating to higher education.”

Thoune said an External Affairs Committee would strengthen ASNMU as a whole, also that there was once a student organization liaison to integrate ASNMU with student groups.

“Student organizations could really make this program stronger,” Thoune said. “This would be a way that our students would have one representative from the board that would go out and try to get to student organization meetings and get really involved.”