Chorale students adjust to practicing during pandemic

If you drive into a parking ramp, you might expect to here a few things; footsteps echoing or a car engine whirring to life. But one thing you wouldn’t expect to hear, is singing. The University Chorale, made up of 15 graduate students, went from practicing in a classroom to a concrete structure known as the Kellogg Center parking ramp. This outdoor structure was the perfect acoustic and socially distanced space choir director David Rayl could think of. And the members of the choir also found it suitable as long as they could sing again.

#ENDSARS seeks to end police brutality in Nigeria

Nigeria is experiencing police brutality and the youth are doing something about it. The movement is called #ENDSARS. It is similar to Black Lives Matter in the United States. SARS stands for Special Anti Robbery Squad, a special police force facing criticism in Nigeria for abuse of power. Focal Point’s Shade Moore met with MSU computer engineering major who’s from Nigeria, Tim Nwanze, to learn more about the movement.

Freshmen skip dorm experience for off-camus living

When the pandemic hit, only 2,000 students were allowed to live on campus instead of the regular 1,500. With Michigan State recommending students to stay home, most freshmen have not had the traditional college experience. But some freshmen made the decision to live near campus while still feeling at home. “Usually you meet people in the dorms,” Nayna Chhabria, a freshman at Michigan State, said. Nayna knew she couldn’t live in a dorm, and she knew she may get homesick.

East Lansing restaurants return to take-out only

With COVID-19 cases growing, the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services released updated guidelines that require restaurants to switch from dine-in to carry-out only. MDHHS says they “will continue to closely monitor the spread of COVID-19 and impacts on our hospitals and health infrastructure to determine if additional measures are necessary.”

Poster says "It's the Great Pumpkin Photo Contest"

East Lansing reimagines Halloween, winter holidays

The Great Pumpkin Walk, usually held in downtown East Lansing every Halloween, is being replaced by a pumpkin photo contest to help keep the holiday safe during the pandemic. City of East LansingEast Lansing is finding new socially distant ways to celebrate some holiday traditions

The photo contest is being handled by the Downtown Management Board, composed of local merchants. Safer ways to celebrate the city’s winter events are also being developed. Amy Schlusler-Schmitt, the neighborhood partnerships initiative liaison, called the photo contest is “A virtual, yet fun way to support local merchants.”

Schlusler-Schmitt said the event is community engagement activity and keeps the fun spirit in East Lansing. 

The contest comes with first-, second- and third-place prizes. The first-place winner gets a $300 Visa gift card and a $25 East Lansing parking voucher.

Group works to get out Asian-American vote

In 2007, APIAVote-MI started as a small activist group informing voters about the harms brought on by a 2006 Michigan amendment, Proposal 2, that banned affirmative action programs in education. Since then, the group has registered thousands of Asian-American and Pacific Islander voters, held voter education events and reminded individuals via phone and mail to prioritize voting.

Slotkin and Brixie deliver their take on the state of the district

U.S. Rep. Elissa Slotkin and State Rep. Julie Brixie spoke at East Lansing High School on Feb. 21 at the state of the district town hall meeting. Slotkin said she didn’t regret her decision on voting yes to impeach President Donald Trump. Slotkin, right, and Brixie take questions. “I made the decision to support the impeachment vote,” Slotkin said.