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The North Wind is an independent student publication serving the Northern Michigan University community. It is partially funded by the Student Activity Fee. The North Wind digital paper is published daily during the fall and winter semesters except on university holidays and during exam weeks. The North Wind Board of Directors is composed of representatives of the student body, faculty, administration and area media.

Students protest against Israel-Hamas war with campus encampment
Students protest against Israel-Hamas war with campus encampment
Dallas WiertellaApril 30, 2024

ASNMU elects new leadership

The student body of Northern Michigan University voted in the new members of the ASNMU student government this week, including a new president and vice president, and made decisions on referendum items.

re-ASNMU graphicOn Wednesday, April 9, online polls closed at noon with 499 total votes being cast by registered NMU students. Final results named junior secondary education English and theater dual-major Katerina Klawes as the new ASNMU president while junior biology major Katelyn Liubakka has been named vice president. According to the 2014 General Election Ballot Results, both Klawes and Liubakka ran unopposed. The conclusion of the online poll also passed both referendum items on the ballot.

Klawes said although she ran for office alone, she looks forward to making up for it with quality leadership.

“I am honored that I have been given this opportunity,” Klawes said. “I hope that I can compensate for the lack of opposition in my candidacy by being a qualified enough candidate to fill the deficit. With this, I promise to fulfill my duties faithfully.

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“I look forward to working with the newly elected ASNMU members during this next year and to all that will be accomplished.”

Similar to Klawes, Liubakka said she will do her best to perform her duties as vice president although she ran unopposed.

“I’m honored to be chosen for the position of vice president and grateful to everyone that voted,” Liubakka said. “Although it was unopposed, I’m still proud to be selected and of the faith that the student body has put in me. I promise that I will fulfill the duties they have trusted me with to the best of my ability. I’m also looking forward to working with all of the new representatives and returning representatives.

Along with the election of the new president and vice president, new ASNMU campus representatives were elected. While there are seven total positions available for off-campus representatives, senior social work major Rachel McCaffrey was elected with 115 votes and senior accounting major Alex Hawke with 107 votes to fill two seats.

For up-campus representatives, sophomore graphic communication major Alex Nekvasil was elected for the position with 30 votes, defeating opponent Wesley Beyer, sophomore theatre major, by 11 votes.

Nekvasil said the leadership of Klawes and Liubakka should prove effective for future ASNMU endeavors.

“Kat and Katie have a strong sense of dedication and are caring unlike what I have previously seen on campus student governments before,” Nekvasil said. “I believe that under their unified leadership, much progress will be made in the semesters to come.”

Filling two of the four available positions for the College of Arts and Science representatives will be junior biology and Spanish dual-major Danielle Schafer, who tallied 155 votes, and junior economics and political science dual-major Mitchell Sevigny, who tallied 119 votes. Freshman mechanical engineering major Danny Barry was elected a College of Health Sciences and Professional Studies representative with 105 votes, unopposed with three remaining openings, and senior English major Alex Nye filled the only slot for College of Graduate Studies representative with 15 votes.

Looking back at this year’s ASNMU assembly, sophomore marketing major and current ASNMU member Julie Goldberg said next year looks promising after starting many projects this academic year at NMU.

“ASNMU got a lot accomplished this year,” Goldberg said. “I look forward to what they will accomplish next year.”

According to the ballot results, 318 people voted “yes” for the first referendum item while 171 voted “no.” As of next year, a 16-cent increase to the NMU Student Activity Fee will be provided to the North Wind independent student newspaper, allowing them to increase writer pay by $1 and add one additional computer for editorial work.

The second referendum item, which consisted of eight sub-questions detailing changes to portions of the language in the ASNMU constitution, was also passed with 349 people voting “yes” and 110 voting “no.”

According to the ASNMU webpage, this year’s 499 total votes marks the lowest amount of votes submitted for student government elections during the last 12 years. In 2002, ASNMU recorded 2,241 votes, while in 2010 there were 2,308 votes. Since 2002, the lowest year prior to 2014 was in 2011 when 837 votes were tallied.

With many representative positions empty going into the 2014-15 year, ASNMU adviser Larry Pagel said there will be an opportunity for students to express interest at the start of the new semester.

“Many seats are currently unfilled, so in the fall, there will be a time when people express interest for openings,” Pagel said. “ASNMU will have to vote at that point while the position of treasurer will be appointed by the new president and will have to be approved by the assembly.”

For more information about vote totals since 2002, visit myweb.nmu.edu/vote. To inquire about representative openings for next semester, visit the ASNMU office in Room 1203 in the University Center.

Klawes and Liubakka will be sworn into office at 8 p.m. on Tuesday, April 15.

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