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Minnesota State University, Mankato

Minnesota State University, Mankato

February 2008 MSSA Newsletter

Page address: http://www.mnsu.edu/mssa/newsletter/8/

Tuition

Tuition is a heated topic. The Minnesota State Student Association is advocating for lower tuition. The current budget for 2008-2009 includes a cap at 3 percent and a 1 percent buy down from the MnScu office. This means that students will be paying $60 less than they would have originally been paying with the original 4 percent tuition increase. Compared to years in the past, students have been faced with tuition increases ranging over 6 percent.
For more information about tuition visit http://www.mnsu.edu/mssa .

Revised Outdoor Campus Recreation Proposal

Campus Rec

A revised proposal includes new softball fields, flag football fields, fitness trails and a new outdoor track and soccer field. This would be completed in two phases. Phase one would begin in spring of 2009, phase two would begin in spring 2010. The proposal cost is planned to be about $30 per semester per student. The proposal can be seen at http://www.mnsu.edu/mssa You can contact the MSSA or Campus Rec offices with any questions or concerns.

Elections

Student Government Banner

Elections for the upcoming 2008-2009 school year will be taking place April 8, 2008. Any students interested in applying for the position of president, vice-president or student senators can stop by the MSSA office in CSU 280 on March 3, 2008.

Community High-Risk Drinking Summit

In the morning of February 27 from 8 to 11:30 a.m., there will be a Community High-Risk Drinking Summit taking place at the Alltel Wireless Center. This summit will involve all members of the community and students are encouraged to attend. Different topics regarding alcohol and the current regulations surrounding issues involving alcohol will be discussed. There will also be a student panel at this summit. Make sure to attend and have your voice heard!

MSSA takes on Parental Notification

The Minnesota State Student Association (MSSA) passed a motion in preparation for MnSCU and Minnesota State University, Mankato's anticipated acceptance of parental notification as allowed under the 1998 Higher Education Act (HEA) amendment to the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act of 1974. The 1998 HEA allows post-secondary institutions "to disclose to a parent or legal guardian of a student, information regarding any violations of any Federal, State, or local law, or of any rule or policy of the institution, governing the use or possession of alcohol or a controlled substance when a student under the age of 21 is found responsible for a disciplinary violation for use or possession" (1998 Higher Education Act, Section 952). The motion describes that while there is a problem with underage drinking among college students in Minnesota, MSSA as an established governing body cannot accept or allow for student's privacy rights to be violated by notifying parents of any criminal activity as long as the student is at least 18.At age 18, according to state and federal laws, students are legal adults and any private information pertaining to that individual cannot be accessed without the permission of the individual.

The MSSA took it one step further and brought forth a motion at the Minnesota State University Student Association (MSUSA). The motion was for the most part the same thing; it described how MSUSA couldn't endorse any MnSCU adopted policy for parental notification. In other words, MSUSA the representative body for MnSCU students, will firmly oppose any legislation that goes against students privacy rights, and, in this case specifically, parental notification.

Get to know your Senator week

During the week of January 28 to February 1, the Minnesota State Student Association hosted a "Get to know your Senator week". MSSA put on various different events including, coffee and hot chocolate on a cold Monday morning, an open game room and free lunch in the Centennial Student Union. This week was a fantastic opportunity for students to get to know their senators and a lot of great questions were asked. The MSSA would like to thank those who participated and let you know that we always appreciate your feedback!

Minnesota State Student Association Leadership Scholarship

Dimes

Five $1,000 scholarships will be awarded for the 2008-2009 school year. These scholarships will be based on student's leadership and service experience, personal statements and recommendations. Applications for these scholarships will be reviewed by the MSSA Scholarship Committee. If you are interested in receiving a scholarship please stop by the MSSA office located in CSU 280. You may also visit http://www.mnsu.edu/mssa for more information.

MSUSA Update

Dear State University Student:

Is your tuition too high? Are you concerned about student fees? Do you have student loan debt? Are you looking for information about financial aid, or want to learn how to register to vote?

Established in 1967, the Minnesota State University Student Association (MSUSA) is an independent, non-profit organization funded and operated by students. MSUSA serves nearly 70,000 students attending Minnesota's seven state universities – Bemidji, Mankato, Metropolitan (St. Paul/Minneapolis), Moorhead, St. Cloud, Southwest (Marshall) and Winona. You pay a per-credit fee to MSUSA, and we want you to get involved!

What We Do

The mission of MSUSA is to educate and inform students about higher education issues that affect their lives as students, while providing opportunities for them to advocate on behalf of all Minnesota state university students. MSUSA works on a variety of issues at the campus, system, state and federal levels. Last year, MSUSA focused on getting the word out about student debt, and as a result, this year's tuition increase is the lowest is has been for years!

This year, MSUSA is working to make it easier for students to participate in elections, advocating for money to repair and build campus buildings, talking with legislators about financial aid, looking for ways to keep the cost of textbooks down, and much more!

How to Get Involved

There are a variety of ways to get involved and make a difference, and the first step is visiting our new and improved website at www.msusa.net. Our website is now much easier to navigate, provides up-to-date information about higher education issues, gives you information you need about registering to vote and financial aid. In addition, you can now sign up to receive information about the issues you care about and find out how you can make a difference! Sign up today to find out about the decisions being made about tuition, textbook prices, and get updates about the 2008 election!

Visit our website today to learn more about MSUSA!

MSUSA Conference

On the weekend of Feb. 1 to Feb. 3 members of the MSSA met with student leaders from Winona State University, Southwest State University, Metro State University, Saint Cloud State University, Bemidji State University, and Minnesota State University-Moorhead as part of the Minnesota State Universities Student Association (MSUSA). Students had the opportunity to have a forum with State Senator Kathy Sheran along with MSUSA chair Kara Brockett and assistant vice-chancellor for student affairs, Mike Lopez. They discussed alcohol policies that the MnSCU and the state legislature can adopt to curb underage and binge drinking. MSUSA also passed a resolution opposing notifying parents of drinking violations for students who are above the age of eighteen unless the student gave previous consent. Another resolution that was passed was advocating for a Good Samaritan policy, which allows students to notify officials in cases of emergency without fear of punishment if the student has been drinking. The conference was very successful and members of the MSSA were happy with the overall success of the conference.

Senate Vacancies

There are currently two vacancies on student senate. If you are interested in becoming a senator in the areas of College of Social and Behavioral Sciences or Gage A, fill out an application at http://www.mnsu.edu/mssa .

Got Issues

MSSA has weekly meetings every Wednesday at 4 p.m in CSU 238. Bring any issues, thoughts or concerns you may have.

Feedback

Do you have news you feel is important for students to know? Send news items to the newsletter editor at mssa@mnsu.edu. The newsletter will be published on a regular basis during the academic year.