The State – 11/09/22

Rachel Fulton

Today’s weather forecast is predicting a few clouds early but other than that mostly sunny with a high of 66 degrees and a low of 53 degrees.

Michigan Democrats rally at MSU for final campaign event before Election Day

Thirteen hours before polls opened in Michigan, Gov. Gretchen Whitmer, one of Michigan State University’s most well-known alumna returned to campus.

Whitmer, who received her undergraduate degree from MSU in 1993, hosted her final campaign event of the 2022 midterm election cycle on campus Monday night near The Rock on Farm Lane.

Whitmer’s visit to campus capped off several months of an intense campaign for reelection against Republican challenger Tudor Dixon. Speakers stressed the importance of college students turning out to vote and said that state and local elections could rest in the hands of MSU students.

In her remarks to the crowd, Whitmer focused on achievements from her first term in office like job growth and education funding.

Whitmer’s messaging was supported by other down-ballot Democrats, including Michigan Supreme Court candidates Richard Bernstein and Kyra Harris Bolden. Bolden told the crowd that how they voted on judicial candidates could affect the future of elections in Michigan.

In addition to the event’s “get out the vote” message, the speakers also addressed issues like abortion rights that were at the top of many voters’ minds heading into yesterday’s Election Day. Whitmer encouraged students to vote yes on Proposal 3 – the Reproductive Freedom for All proposal.

She said between her connection to the school and the importance of the youth vote, MSU seemed like a natural place to host the final rally of her campaign.

MSU students take advantage of same-day registration, voting

Through yesterday’s election day, Michigan State students filled Brody Square to register and reregister to vote on campus. On-campus polling locations saw a steady stream of voters throughout the early afternoon.

Michigan Secretary of State Jocelyn Benson announced that college students could register to vote on their college campuses, using their student housing addresses, in 2019. Hundreds of MSU students have taken advantage of this opportunity and are voting at one of four on-campus polling locations.

Sophomore Emma Mehan voted for the August primaries in her hometown and joined the line in Brody to reregister with her temporary address to be able to vote on campus today. She said she was confused at first and went to vote at IM West before finding out she had to reregister but is still happy she is able to vote.

Joining the polling staff at Brody was Keith Slotkin, whose sister Elissa is on the ballot for Michigan’s 7th district representative. Slotkin said while the morning was slow, lines began picking up around 11 a.m.

Slotkin said for a midterm election, with no presidential candidates to motivate voters, there is a lot of excitement and turnout. He said about 75% of the line was female, which he said was “amazing to see.” Slotkin noted an increased effort this year to get MSU students involved compared to previous elections.

Wharton Center meshes art and science with Of Equal Place: Isotopes in Motion show

On Sunday, Of Equal Place: Isotopes in Motion at the Wharton Center explored physics through dance, mimicking the motion of isotopes.

The dancers explored research taking place at the Facility for Rare Isotope Beams, or FRIB, at MSU. With the goal of presenting science as an art form, the dancers wanted to combine hard mathematics and science in a medium that most audiences could relate to.

The FRIB uses a fragment separator to smash a beam of radioactive nuclei into a target to study the properties and the reactions that could happen to the nuclei.

Director of the Institute for the Arts and Creativity at the Wharton Center Bert Goldstein was approached by members of the MSU science community to create an art piece that explained the facility and incorporated physics into a multimedia experience.

Goldstein reached out to the local dance studio Happendance and the Dance Exchange, who both have done science presentations. Dance Exchange, involves the community.

They decided to perform a dance centered around science and conduct two workshops at the Wharton – one about the dance and one about the movement. The dancers’ ages range from 16 to 72, integrating women and minorities in the physical sciences at MSU into the ensemble to encourage changing the face of STEM.

Audience member Jenny Rasmussen brought her daughter to experience the event. She said that the event was palatable for those who don’t want to sit in college lectures.

Based on original reporting by Lily Guiney, Vivian Barrett and Liz Nass.