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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

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The State – 03/05/24


Welcome back to The State after a week off for spring break!

Today’s weather forecast is predicting a steady rain in the morning with showers continuing in the afternoon with a high of 57 degrees and a low of 33 degrees.


MSU trustee Rema Vassar resigns as board chair

Michigan State University trustee Rema Vassar has stepped down from her position as board chair.

Her resignation comes two hours before a special board meeting which was held to discuss the results of a 63-page investigation into board chair impropriety that was released last Wednesday.

The report found that Vassar violated board bylaws and code of ethics by interfering in university investigations and lawsuits and using students to orchestrate “attacks” on colleagues, among other things.

The investigation, conducted by the firm Miller & Chevalier, recommended Vassar be referred to Gov. Gretchen Whitmer for corrective action under a law in the state constitution that gives the governor the right to remove members of boards of state universities from office.

It also recommended that trustee Brianna Scott be censured for publicly releasing a letter of allegations against Vassar, which triggered the investigation in October 2023.


MSU professor charged with possession of child pornography, placed on administrative leave

A Michigan State University professor in the Broad Business College has been charged with six counts of “child pornography-related allegations,” according to the Ingham County Prosecutor’s Office.

Iskandar Arifin, a 49-year-old Meridian Township resident, was charged with three counts of possessing “child sexually abusive material” and three related counts of using a computer device to commit a crime.

Arifin was placed on administrative leave pending the investigation, MSU spokesperson Emily Guerrant said. MSU’s Office of Institutional Equity has also opened a case, in accordance with MSU policy, Guerrant said.

Arifin has been a fixed-term faculty member in MSU’s finance department since 2019, according to his faculty profile. He’s taught FI312: Introduction to Investment, FI32: Theory of Investments, FI355: Computer Applications in Financial Modeling and FI801: Managerial Finance.

Arifin has two scheduled hearings in Mason’s 55th District Court: a pre-conference probable cause hearing on March 12 at 8:30 a.m. and a preliminary hearing on March 19 at 9:30 a.m.


Emotional support animals provide companionship, comfort to students

Although they don’t go through formal training and certification, emotional support animals can be life-changing for their owners. Whether it is preventing or helping improve existing symptoms, emotional support animals often provide a connection that boosts an individual’s mental health.

Emotional support animals are often confused with service and therapy animals. MSU Veterinary Social Work Services program coordinator Megan Spedoske said that the primary difference with emotional support animals is that they are not required to have any training.

What separates an emotional support animal from a pet is just the name and an individual’s understanding of their human-animal bond, Spedoske said.

For physics sophomore Ben Pluta, having an emotional support animal made living on campus possible.

Pluta has two dwarf rats named Biscuit and Latte that live with him in his single dorm. He said having them has helped his depression as it gives him another living thing to be responsible for.

Because enrichment is necessary for animals, Spedoske said knowing the space and time that is available for an animal should be a top priority. She said owners have to keep the animal’s needs in mind as well as their own.


Based on original reporting by Theo Scheer and Vivian Barrett.

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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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