Wednesday, April 4, 2012

MSUSA Alumni Update: April 2012





Annual Meeting and Picnic June 9th, 2012
The MSUSA Alumni Association Board of Directors would like to officially announce the Annual Meeting. It will take place on June 9, 2012 from 11:00 am - 2:00 pm in conjunction with the annual picnic in Shakopee, Minnesota. This meeting is open to all Minnesota State University Student Association alumni and elections for a number of open positions on the Board will take place at the meeting. Those interested should also join us for a day of horse racing fun at Canterbury Park. Watch your e-mail for more details on the event including venue location and election information.

Alumni Happy Hour, Grumpy's in Roseville Tuesday, April 24 from 4:30-6:30 pm
Join us to connect with fellow alumni and enjoy complimentary appetizers on Tuesday, April 24 from 5:00-7:00 p.m.  Grumpy's is located at 2801 N Snelling Ave. in Roseville, MN.

Guest Alumni Post: James Foster
Alumni Association Board Member, and former Bemidji State University student, James Foster offers advice to students and recent graduates on what to do when things don't go quite as planned post graduation. Click here to check out his guest blog post.
Alumni Spotlight: Troy Olson
Click here to read the April alumni spotlight featuring Troy Olson. Troy is a Minnesota State University Moorhead graduate. He served both as a Delegate and as a Lobby Corps member while involved at MSUSA. Troy is currently serving his country overseas with the Army National Guard in Camp Arifjan, Kuwait and is a student at St. Thomas School of Law.
Legislative Update
Bonding
The House Ways and Means Committee took up the bonding bill and laid it over for further discussion and action. The bill includes $280 million in capital projects around the state, with $56 million for the Minnesota State Colleges and Universities (MnSCU). Rep. Kathy Brynaert, DFL-Mankato, asked the author of the bill Rep. Larry Howes, R-Walker, how he determined the MnSCU projects that were included in the bill. Howes said he looked at the moderately priced projects so he could include as many projects on the MnSCU list as he could given the amount of the total bill.
Committee members also took up HF 2754, the State Capitol restoration bill for $221 million. Author of the bill, Rep. Howes, said the funding will be split up over four years, with $60 million for fiscal years 2012, 2013, 2014 and 2015. Rep. Lyndon Carlson, DFL-Crystal, asked Howes if the full amount of $221 million can be staged over the four-year period to free up room for other projects. Carlson said, while restoration of the State Capitol is important, paying the full amount up front crowds out other needs, whether it’s higher education or other projects. Committee members passed the bill and sent it to the floor.
The Senate Capital Investment Committee met on Thursday and took up the $496 million bonding bill, which includes $127.028 million for the Minnesota State Colleges and Universities. Included in the bill is $32 million for higher education asset preservation and replacement (HEAPR). The college and university projects include:
  • $13.389 million for the Minneapolis Community and Technical College workforce program renovation;
  • $13.851 million for Ridgewater College, Willmar technical instruction lab renovation;
  • $4.606 million for Minnesota West Community and Technical College, Worthington renovation and addition;
  • $13.315 million for South Central College, Faribault classroom renovation and addition;
  • $0.980 million for Anoka Ramsey Community College, Coon Rapids bioscience and allied health addition;
  • $26.292 million for North Hennepin Community College bioscience and health careers center addition;
  • $0.500 million for Southwest Minnesota State University science lab renovation;
  • $1.5 million for Saint Paul College health and science center design;
  • $5 million for Century College academic partners classroom design and construction;
  • $7.230 million for Dakota County Technical College transportation and emerging technical lab renovation;
  • $2 million for the system wide STEM renovation;
  • $2.065 million for Minnesota State University, Mankato clinical science building design;
  • $4 million for St. Cloud Technical and Community College medium heavy truck and auto body addition and renovation; and
  • $0.300 million for Northland Community and Technical College aviation maintenance facility expansion
Voter Identification
The Senate passed the voter identification bill off the floor on Friday by a vote of 36-30. The bill is different than the House version passed earlier in the week, so the House could either accept the Senate language or go to conference committee to work through the differences between the Senate and House versions of the bill. If a compromise is reached between the two bills and the full bodies pass them again, the question would be put to voters in the November election.
Author of the bill, Sen. Scott Newman, R-Hutchinson, said he believes some people are voting illegally and that the proposed constitutional amendment would stop that; however, opponents of the bill, said those fears have been blown out of proportion and that voter fraud is almost nonexistent. Opponents said there will be a negative impact; with thousands of people having trouble voting.
Textbook Workgroup
Due in part to the MSUSA's work, legislation that would create a system workgroup to address the rising costs of textbooks through a combination of strategies is included in both the House and Senate higher education omnibus bills and has a great deal of support.
Special thanks to our Director of Government Relations, Jonathan Bohn for providing this update. For legislative updates every Friday afternoon, check out our blog.

Alumni Association Bylaw Change: Election Guidelines
The Alumni Association Board of Directors would like to change Article IV, Section C of the Bylaws to allow board members who are appointed to fill a vacancy to serve out the remainder of their term. As it stands now, those appointed are only allowed to serve until the next Annual Meeting. As per our governing documents, any general alumni association members who have concerns or questions about this change should contact alumni association board chair, Josh Martin at jcmartin7872@gmail.com by no later than Tuesday, April 3rd, 2012. To view a copy of the bylaws click here.

Alumni Sponsored Internships
Are you a successful alumnus looking to help current state university students? The Minnesota State University Student Association Alumni Association has created a new section on the MSUSA website for internships provided by MSUSA alumni. Please contact MSUSA Director of Communications, Jered Weber at jweber@msusa.org if you have any internships you would like to see posted to the website.

Spring Delegates April 13-15 at Cragun's Resort in Brainerd, MN
The MSUSA Delegate's Assembly and Board of Directors will be meeting at the Cragun's Resort in Brainerd, Minnesota. Businesses that will be covered at the conference include 2012-2013 Officer Elections, Platform review, Internal Affairs, and much more. For more information on the weekend click here. Bemidji State University alumni Board Member, Michael Meehlhause will also be stopping by to help students plan for an exciting 2012-2013 academic year of student engagement and outreach.

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