Tony started at MSU in the fall of 2016 and is pursuing a major in journalism with a minor in broadcasting. He has dreams of becoming a reporter at a local news station and then working his way up to national news. Tony loves to travel, be on the water and spend time with his family.
For Dr. Mel Koelling, his 180 acre tree farm in Mason is his life. After 37 years at Michigan State, he retired and now works his farm full-time. At the beginning of the season, Koelling had over 90,000 trees on his property. Now, it’s his season to sell. “We expect to sell 3,000 more trees,” he said.
In 1992, the Supreme Court ruled all sports betting illegal in most states. In May, they got rid of that law opening the door for a lot of states to explore sports betting, including Michigan. There are now bills going through Lansing to legalize sports betting in the state including online sports betting and fantasy sports betting. Alex McRae is a senior at Michigan State. He plays fantasy football and baseball.
Michigan has the highest auto insurance rates in the country, but a new law plans to lower that. The Michigan Catastrophic Claims Association, MCCA, will lower the assessment charged per vehicle to $100. All drivers currently pay $220 to the Michigan Catastrophic Claims Fund, making this a 55% decrease. It only applies to those with unlimited medical coverage. For those who have lesser coverage, they could avoid the fee all together.
Tom Izzo is a staple to Michigan State and the Big Heads are a staple to Detroit’s Thanksgiving Day Parade. Now, the two are combining. A Tom Izzo Big Head will debut this year at the America’s Thanksgiving Parade in Detroit on Thursday. The head, created by the Big Head Corps, will join Magic Johnson as the only Michigan State University based heads. Dory Scherrod, Administrative Initiatives and Director of Big Head Corps for the Parade Company, said the Michigan native is such a positive influence on the state and Detroit.
Michigan State’s College of Social Science offers 31 different undergraduate majors from economics to criminal justice to history. But, there’s one that goes a little deeper. “We go through the process where we create what’s called the biology profile where we look at the age, sex, ancestry and stature of the individual as estimated from their human skeletal remains,” Dr. Joe Hefner, an assistant professor in the Anthropology Department and Director of the MSU Forensic Anthropology lab, said. Dr. Hefner is a rare kind of professional, being one of about 130 board certified professionals in the country and the anthropology department is a rare kind itself. “We’re one of six PhD programs in the country,” Dr. Hefner said.
The Supreme Court has rejected a ruling that would have required district lines to be redrawn in Michigan. In April, three federal judges, including two from Michigan and one from the U.S. 6th Circuit Court of Appeals in Cincinnati, ruled the current lines are drawn unconstitutionally to benefit the G.O.P. before the 2020 election. They said it suppressed Democratic voters. Two months later, the Supreme Court voted 5-4 they have no place to determine partisan gerrymandering cases. On October 21st, they dismissed the case entirely.
With Halloween next week, Michigan State wants students to be conscious of their costume choices. Signs have been posted around some student living areas like Owen and Holden Halls asking if costumes are racially, ethnically or culturally based. The “Culture is not a costume” posters include people dressed as native Americans, Chinese princesses and an alien holding a green card to represent illegal immigrants. The signs aren’t new this year, but gained some attention after game show host Chuck Woolery falsely tweeted that the university banned costumes to his over 600,000 followers. While the university is not banning any clothing articles, in a statement to Focal Point News, a MSU spokesperson said, “through the materials on cultural appropriation, we are encouraging students to consider the impact that their costume choices may have on others in order to create an environment where Spartans feel safe, welcome and appreciated.”
Abortions and women’s right to choose to get them or not is a hot topic in the country. California passed a bill that requires the California State University and University of California systems to offer abortion pills to students. A student takes two pills during the first ten weeks of pregnancy to induce a miscarriage. “We think this is a very bad idea,” Peri Pung, the President of Protect Life at MSU, said. But not everyone agrees.
This week was ‘It’s on Us’ week at Michigan State University. ‘It’s on Us’ is a national campaign that wants to end sexual violence on college campuses. “We know that, statistically, it just happens more on college campuses all around the nation,” Leah Short, a programing specialist with the Prevention, Outreach and Education Department said. “I think that everyone should be having this conversation at every age.” Events this week ranged from music and art therapy to a “Teal Out” on Friday, the color that represents sexual assault awareness.
A Michigan State University student tweeted early Thursday morning that U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) agents were spotted in south neighborhood. Another tweet conversation shows two students talking about it. One person wasn’t sure if it happened that night, but says a resident assistant claimed this had happened within the last two weeks. Focal Point News reached out to ICE for more information. A spokesperson says they are not aware of any activity on campus.