Michigan State University Student Radio

Impact 89FM | WDBM-FM

Michigan State University Student Radio

Impact 89FM | WDBM-FM

Michigan State University Student Radio

Impact 89FM | WDBM-FM


The State – 02/20/24

Today’s weather forecast is predicting plentiful sunshine with a high of 48 degrees and a low of 34 degrees.

MSU already spent over $500k on investigation into allegations of board chair misconduct

An outside investigation into allegations that board chair Rema Vassar violated Board of Trustees bylaws and university policies has cost Michigan State University a huge amount as of Nov. 30, 2023.

The investigation began after trustee Brianna Scott sent a letter to the Board of Trustees on Oct. 22, 2023 alleging that Vassar bullied colleagues, interfered in legal disputes and attempted to keep word of trustee meddling out of an official report about the February campus shooting, among other things. Scott’s letter also called for Vassar’s removal as board chair.

A day later, MSU trustee and Office of Audit, Risk and Compliance chair Dan Kelly called upon the office to investigate the allegations. MSU announced that law firm Miller & Chevalier would be the entity conducting the investigation on Nov. 7, 2023.

Throughout November, Miller & Chevalier investigators analyzed more documents and prepared for and conducted interviews with MSU personnel and trustees — whose names were either redacted or not included in the documents.

The documents also report that investigators worked to develop “key search terms for on-site trustee phone review” and met with MSU General Counsel Brian Quinn about the scope of the investigation.

A ‘major’ commitment: MSU drum majors bend over backward for their team

The Michigan State Marching Band was formed in 1870 and 154 years later, the band functions just as strongly and united as it always has.

Some may think that this is because of the director or conductor of the band and others may be surprised that it’s actually a student.

It’s known that the drum major of the band is the leader; they are the commander. They are the teachers to those working their way up and they are part of the reason why the band moves the way they do and how they play like they play.

Being a drum major is hard work, and music education senior Lacy Jewell and nursing freshman Tom McGovern know very well the difficulties – and payoffs – of being in that very position. But through the time they’ve been in this position, they’ve embraced every aspect of their role.

The process of becoming a drum major starts with an audition, and Jewell and McGovern just recently auditioned and were gifted with the approval of the position. Since becoming the drum majors, they have both been navigating the balance between work for the band and schoolwork.

During the season, however, the days for Jewell and McGovern take an upswing and they are both constantly working and are dedicated to leading the marching band. From August to the end of football season, the band has multiple rehearsals per week usually from 4:00 p.m. to 6:00 p.m. but will have two rehearsals in one day, generally at 4:30 p.m. to 6:00 p.m. and 7:00 p.m. to 9:00 p.m.

Working on the same thing over and over again may seem repetitive to most people, but Jewell said that there are a few things that help her take a mental break after or between practices, a time to not focus on the marching band.

Drum majors have an unwavering commitment and dedication to their marching band, and Jewell and McGovern have proven themselves to be fit for the position. Both consistently work towards bettering themselves and all 300 members of the band, while improving their leadership and teaching skills.

Based on original reporting by Theo Scheer and Jayden Hewitt.

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About the Contributor
Rachel Fulton
Rachel Fulton, Podcast Director/News Producer
Rachel (she/her/hers) is a junior at MSU studying Journalism with a minor in Broadcasting. She found her love for radio in high school, where she was the News Director and a DJ for 89.5 WAHS Avondale Community Radio. She has been with the Impact since her Freshman year where she has continued as the News Producer for The State podcast and now our Podcasts Director. Her love for radio turned into love for Podcasting as outside of the Impact she is the Associate Producer for Lauren LoGrasso’s award-winning podcast “Unleash Your Inner Creative.” On her free time, Rachel loves to workout, swim, and cheer on her boyfriend Zack who coaches for MSU Football. “Let me fade into flashing lights”

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