By Spencer Pauley, Copy Editor
After a close election race, Ohio Wesleyan will have its first black female student body president: Cara Harris.
Harris and vice president-elect Peyton Hardesty said they are ready to start the next semester with more emphasis on student involvement.
“We really want to allow students to vote on the weekly specials for Ham-Will,” Harris said.
The reason for this being that dining service is a primary concern for students at OWU. By allowing students to have more say on the food they’re being offered, it may help improve the student satisfaction with dining services.
Harris and Hardesty said they want to see more sustainability with efforts to make OWU more environmentally-friendly. Harris said she thinks one good way to do that is by taking a few days per week to only use green containers at Ham-Will.
“I think only 10 percent of the containers that we have purchased through WCSA are in rotation, and those are really low numbers,” Harris said. “So I think that if people are forced to use them, then they could see how easy it is to turn them in and get their points back.”
The exact number of days in which the green containers would be the only option are possibly two to three a week for breakfast, lunch and dinner.
Besides Ham-Will dining changes being considered, Hardesty said they want to see less trash being created through the cafe options.
According to Hardesty, the average college student gets two to four coffee drinks a day, and most of the time, they’re throwing the material away afterward. One problem that is getting in the way of allowing students to use reusable coffee mugs is the Chartwells staff itself.
“I’ve had multiple encounters with Chartwells employees where they’re saying that it’s a health concern for using our own mugs because it might be dirty,” Hardesty said.
So the solution Hardesty said they are considering is either better communication with dining services next semester to allow students to use reusable mugs or encourage the university to invest in reusable coffee cups, similar to the green containers in Ham-Will.
Harris and Hardesty are preparing to change how WCSA meetings are run as well. Instead of having one legislative day per month, Harris is proposing having two legislative days a month and another two days for reports and brainstorming for the whole senate.
“I feel like you don’t get to know everybody in full senate, you only get to know your committee members because you are the ones meeting weekly and biweekly,” Harris said.
Additionally, Hardesty said they believe that new members of WCSA might not understand the language used in the meetings so the messages are not received by everyone.
To fix this problem, Hardesty wants to dedicate time to educate members on the language being used.
“I feel that if we can incorporate learning how to do something internally like learn how to draft a bill for 10 minutes, then now there’s no more excuses for offering ideas,” Harris said.
By allowing time dedicated to learning how to effectively be a part of WCSA, Harris and Hardesty said they hope to see more members bring their ideas to meetings for discussions. With Harris and Hardesty winning the election, expect to see more student involvement to be considered.
Note: The print and digital version of this article used incorrect pronouns for Peyton Hardesty. This version of the article has been updated to correct the mistake.