ASUPS welcomes seven new senators

The fall election for senate positions in the Associated Students of the University of Puget Sound has brought in seven new senators for the coming year.

Daniel Laesch and Michaela Metzler are the Senators-at-large. Housing representatives include the On-Campus House Senator Isa Ruiz and the Residence Hall Senator Taylor Smith. Kyle Long will serve as the Off-Campus Senator, Danielle Dorr as the Greek Senator and Alissa Hartnig as the Freshman Senator.

Elections for the student government are held twice a year, in the fall and spring. The fall election concerns seven positions, while the spring election brings in other senate members as well as new executives.

“By having alternating elections, this helps to maintain a sense of continuity between elections, so that it’s not like starting off with a completely new slate each semester or election,” ASUPS VP Rachel Borsini said.

The term for all positions is one year, save the Freshman Senator whose term lasts from fall to spring, and the Senior Senator, who is elected the spring of their junior year and retains the position until graduation. “The ASUPS Senate is extremely important in representing our students in working towards improving our campus as a whole to be a place that we truly are proud of,” Borsini said.

The primary responsibility of the senate as a whole is to allocate funding in a way that will be most beneficial to the campus community. The importance of this role becomes apparent in the large variety and quantity of clubs, as well as the constant events and activities held on campus.

Despite an already diverse and vibrant campus, the student government continues to work to enrich campus life. Throughout their term, senators pursue projects to address needs they recognize on campus.

Freshman Senator Alissa Hartnig expressed an interest in enhancing clubs and activities at the University.

“I would love to see smaller clubs and groups that don’t have a strong presence on campus grow in membership and visibility on campus,” Hartnig said.

Another change that may come of the recent election is increased communication regarding events and opportunities on campus. This is a collaborative undertaking, as a number of the recently elected senators identified awareness of events as an area that on which they intend to work.

“Our school offers many different opportunities so it is hard to know everything that is happening,” Metzler said.

Ruiz and Dorr explained the senate’s vision of utilizing the new ASUPS website as a place to bring together information regarding upcoming events.

Diversity within the campus community is also reflected in the Senate, according to Ruiz. “The Senate is unique because the student population we represent directly elects us. This results in a diverse body, a comprehensive representation of the student population, and a great group of people to work with,” Ruiz said.

Greater representation is another potential change that may come of the election, according to ASUPS President Brian Ernst.

“It is so important to participate in these elections and vote for the person that you think will represent your voice on campus,” Borsini said.

The new Senate’s aims to increase awareness of opportunities on campus and to continue working to better represent the student body are the projected changes as a result of the fall Senate elections. These changes highlight the student government’s continual work towards a better environment for students.