ASNMU nearly fills general assembly

Chelsea Birdsall

The Associated Students of Northern Michigan University (ASNMU) has filled 16 positions and is currently trying to determine  their final representatives on the ASNMU board. “ASNMU has one of the fullest boards that it has had in the last 10 years,” ASNMU President Katerina Klawes said, citing her records.

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In a recent meeting, the agenda was full of appointments to representative spots and chairs. Many students stepped down from one position in order to change to a different position. Two possible positions left to fill at this time are a health and professional sciences representative and one more off-campus representative, according to Klawes.

Klawes stressed the appropriate proportion of representatives and why it took a few weeks to gather and fill vacancies. She said they were hesitant to fill all the positions until they were sure of the enrollment numbers so they didn’t have too many representatives on the board.

“Our representation is dependent on how many students are enrolled,” Klawes said. “We are still waiting to analyze the enrollment changes to determine which positions will be affected. There is a possibility that some of the open spots we currently have will be removed.”

Since NMU is at a decline in enrollment numbers this school year, Klawes said some positions were cut, including two off campus representatives, potentially a general studies representative and an arts and science representative.

Klawes said the board, including the executive seats, would end up being around 18 students, varying heavily on enrollment in each college. Every 300 students per college gains an extra representative.

Mitchell Sevigny, a member on the appointments committee, said they were thinking critically of applicants and it is not an easy process.

“We’re not just accepting everyone who applies,” Sevigny said. “We do interview and we have turned some people away so it’s not like we’re desperate trying to fill our board.”

Because each active ASNMU member is required to serve on both a university committee and a project, members were shuffled around. Klawes said meeting times for the committees had been changed from last semester, unfortunately conflicting with student schedules. However, she said many were able to pick up another position that better fit their availability.

New appointees to the student government included freshman Jessica Gula to college of business representative, junior Lindsey Lieck and senior Sara Spragg to down-campus representatives, freshman Sheila Williams to general studies representative, junior Anne Marie Wellman to director of public relations and off-campus representative and freshman Brianna Wright to college of arts and sciences representative.

Though there are members who were appointed this semester, there are a few that were appointed to their positions at the end of last semester. Last semester’s appointments include senior Mitchell Sevigny to director of external affairs and off-campus representative, graduate student Alex Nye to graduate studies representative, senior Rachel McCaffrey to off-campus representative and organization liason, junior Danielle Schafer to college of arts and sciences representative and chair of academic affairs and senior Alex Hawke to ASNMU chair of assembly.

While there are plenty of new faces to represent the student body of NMU, former members that were reappointed to the board were also present at the meeting. Returners include senior Spencer Deering to off-campus representative, senior Vito Giannola to ASNMU treasurer and SFC chairman, junior Teala Howell to off-campus representative, junior Katie Liubakka to ASNMU vice president and junior Katerina Klawes to ASNMU president.

Overall, Klawes said she is happy with the board and looks forward to many exciting projects that will take place over the next semester.

Vice President Katie Liubakka said she is also confident that the general assembly will do great things this year.

“The appointments committee has been working very hard to fill all open positions and I am very pleased with their dedication,” Liubakka said.

Newly appointed advisor to ASNMU, Assistant Dean of Students Lina Blair said she is also excited about the board members.

“They just have a real interest in helping the student body voice their concerns and also are showing a lot of energy to do the programming side of things too,” Blair said. “They communicate well, they’re passionate about what they’re doing and they seem really open to suggestions.”

If you have questions, comments or concerns for your student body government, open meetings are held at 8:30 p. m. in room 311 in the LRC.