The State – 03/17/23

Rachel Fulton

Happy St. Patrick’s Day!

Today’s weather forecast is predicting cloudy with light rain early and then becoming more windy later on with a high of 49 degrees and a low of 20 degrees. For the weekend it looks like it will be mixed high 20’s and 30’s with wind and some sunshine.

MSU students and advocates rally to push for gun violence prevention laws

The Capitol Lawn on Tuesday morning was split down the middle: those exclaiming for action and government change in the building they were standing in front of, and those who brought bull horns and their own signs to counter-protest the rally against gun violence, speaking out about their second amendment rights.

Michigan Education Association President Paula Herbart said she was there to speak about teachers being faced with unrelenting gun violence.

Herbart said lawmakers need to take action to protect students.

Neuroscience sophomore Joseph Kesto, a member of Spartans Against Gun Violence stood in front of the Capitol for his ninth speech since Feb. 13. He said that while time progresses, most of his words have been lost while the world continues to move on, yet his own community continues to deal with the trauma. His family immigrated to the United States from Iraq in the early 2000s to provide his family with the promise of safety.

Associated Students of Michigan State University, or ASMSU, Internal Affairs and Administration Vice President Carl Austin Miller Grondin was also present. Though he did not make a speech, he said he wanted to be there to show solidarity with the struggle. He even spent his spring break working on meeting with legislators and planning more events.

Shane Trejo was one of the counter-protestors, feeling the need to come to work against what he believes is different special interest lobbying groups looking to take away his second amendment rights, finding the rally offensive and not wanting to comply with.

Trejo advocated for what he calls “constitutional carry,” which would allow students to go through training to carry on campus. He said without this many students on campus would feel like sitting ducks.

Throughout the protest, students were able to tell the stories they have been reflecting on for a month while others worked against what they thought would be infringing rights that would hinder Michigan’s gun policies.

Ben VanSumeren’s ‘freak’ athleticism steals show at Michigan State Pro Day

Pro Day is a unique opportunity, not just for the upper echelon of NFL Draft prospects but for guys like Michigan State redshirt senior linebacker Ben VanSumeren – a lesser-known prospect on the national ranks – it’s the only one or two shots they get to impress professional scouts.

If any one of the 12 Spartans to participate in Michigan State’s Pro Day Wednesday dropped the most jaws of visiting scouts, it was VanSumeren. His out-of-this-world athletic ability was on full display, garnering the loudest hoots and hollers of the day from his spectating teammates and coaches.

He wasn’t invited to the NFL Scouting Combine, but had he been there, many of his statistics would’ve ranked among the best. VanSumeren started with a 42.5-inch vertical jump, a measurement that would’ve ranked first among all linebackers and third among all positions at the combine. He even received a third attempt at the jump after the scouts had to raise the tester because he completely cleared it on his second leap.

Since declaring for the NFL Draft, VanSumeren has been training in Florida alongside redshirt senior wide receiver Jayden Reed, who – along with sixth-year punter Bryce Baringer – was one of the two MSU participants at the NFL Scouting Combine. It’s why Reed wasn’t shocked at all that VanSumeren put on a show, and neither were his other teammates who all pulled out their phones to record VanSumeren. It was like they all knew something special was about to happen.

Luckily for VanSumeren, Wednesday wasn’t the only time he’s shined on the national stage over the last month. He was selected to the East-West Shrine Bowl in Las Vegas, where he recorded a game-high seven tackles to go along with a sack.

How much the stock the scouts put into VanSumeren’s measurables may not be clear until the draft takes place in late April, but wherever he may land – with or without an NFL team – VanSumeren established that his uncanny athleticism cannot be disregarded.

Students want MSU to implement 24/7 building lock policy, increase security

As of Monday, March 13, student IDs are required to enter most buildings on Michigan State University’s campus between 6 p.m. and 7:30 a.m. The change comes as the university ramps up security measures after the mass shooting that took place at Berkey Hall and the Union on Monday, Feb. 13.

However, some students don’t think this is enough and demand more action from the university to ensure campus safety.

Psychology senior McAna Craft said locking buildings at 6 p.m. won’t make a difference because the students will be most at-risk during the day when attending classes or going to work.

A 24/7 ID requirement for building access is the least the university can do to protect its students, Craft said, and further measures might include having police officers in busy buildings and locking classrooms.

As the university continues to make changes following the shooting, students want their voices to be heard and taken seriously.

Based on original reporting by Liz Nass, Sam Sklar and Ellie Young.

To end our last episode of the week, here are a few announcements!

Here is the MSU home athletic line-up for the weekend…


  • Women’s Tennis will go up against Nebraska at 10AM at the Indoor Tennis Center.

For our last announcement, make sure to stay safe if you’re planning to party for the holiday or MSU Men’s Basketball’s NCAA Tournament game occurring this afternoon!