Michigan State University trustees want to beef up campus security after an attack killed three and wounded five, and they’re expecting the Legislature to provide the extra money.
“We’ve gone from a one- to five-year (security enhancement) plan to a one- to six-month plan,” MSU Board of Trustees Chair Rema Vassar told Bridge Michigan. “And we need money.”
Vassar wouldn’t say how much would be necessary to better secure the sprawling campus that has over 560 buildings.
According to Bridge, Vassar speculated the enhanced security measures may include “classroom door locks, shortened hours when academic buildings are unlocked, and more security cameras.”
While Vassar contends MSU’s security needs have “grown exponentially,” so, too, has the university’s endowment fund. As of 2021 – the last year of disclosed figures – the school’s endowment stood at $4.4 billion, up some 25 percent over the previous year. It has grown every year since 2016.
In 2022, Michigan State received an additional $72.2 million from the state.
The State News reported the extra funds would be used to pay for “Renovations at the greenhouse complexes and Dairy Cattle Teaching and Research Center,” to the tune of $53 million.
“The remainder of the funding, $15 million, will benefit the Center for Targeted Violence Prevention and $3 million will go toward the Apple Developer Academy,” the State News said.
The Center’s purpose is described on its website as, “an innovation incubator that builds on our expertise and provides a platform to bring persons and organizations together that are dedicated to preventing extremism and mass violence and improving the response and recovery from these tragic events.”
It is not clear what, if anything, of that organization’s work could have prevented Anthony McRae’s attack on Feb. 15, or if those funds would have been better spent on direct security measures.