USC's student senate confirmed eight new senators at its most recent meeting on Wednesday, representing a variety of different colleges across the university.
The newly confirmed senators are William Barnes, Benjamin Cost, Phillip Howe, Mia Lapinta, Caleb Lapsley, Xin Lin, Luke Phillips and Grant Sellers, and members of the group will serve on the sustainability, inclusion and equity, academics and student life committees.
Lapsley said that coming in as new senators, they have high hopes for the impact that they will have on both the university and, more specifically, the student body.
"What I'm hoping to accomplish is making some effective changes that students can actually see and visualize and feel like they have a say so in things," Lapsley said.
Lapsley also said that he has experienced racial profiling on campus and wants to change the way some incidents are communicated between students and campus police.
"I myself have experienced, I guess you would say racial profiling from on-campus police, but the situation was handled very professionally," Lapsley said. "He showed me that it was just a miscommunication, and everything actually worked out. So I was very surprised with the swift response from the school, and I just want to see that we can make an effective change that students see and witness."
Barnes said that another ongoing campus issue that he wants the student senate to value is safe and quality student housing.
“I think a big thing for me — and that we worked on at freshman council — was mold prevention in dorms," Barnes said. "When I moved in last year, there was just mold everywhere. It's on the ceilings, in the showers (and) on the floors, so finding ways that we can prevent that to keep the student body healthy I think is really important."
Overall, the new senators are excited to begin their work in the student senate and start serving the student body, according to Barnes.
“I definitely think meeting all the new senators and seeing all the pieces of legislation we can come up with will be a really big thing for me, but also starting initiatives on my own and getting other people to help me,” Barnes said.
Members of the student senate leadership team said they are also looking forward to working with the new senators.
“We're super excited to have all of the new senators. All of them are more than qualified for this role, and they're very excited. Lots of them are coming in with really great ideas to make our university better, and we're super excited to fill some of the vacant seats and get closer to a full senate,” Lauren Horton, the press secretary for the Speaker of the student senate, said.