The Daily Tar Heel

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Friday May 7th

UNC Student Congress elects Paige Comparato new speaker

The new leader of Student Congress wants to emphasize the organization’s roots — student representation.

On Wednesday, Paige Comparato was elected speaker of the 94th Student Congress.

Comparato said she wants to make Student Congress a vehicle for student advocacy and a place where students can express what they want to change at UNC.

“If there’s a big issue on campus, we want to send a resolution out to that,” Comparato said.

As speaker, Comparato is Student Congress’ chief administrator, responsible for both communication between members and keeping debates constructive, successful and civil, she said.

Comparato, who formerly served as chairwoman of the rules and judiciary committee, said she was thrilled when she found out she got the position.

“I was just really excited to see what I could help with as speaker. You have so many more resources,” she said.

Comparato said she wants to improve both the efficiency of Student Congress and its relationship with the executive branch.

Comparato said she also wants to make sure all members of Student Congress feel confident and comfortable enough to engage in discussion and to encourage their individual goals.

“All I know is that it’s going to be a very active Congress,” she said.

Comparato, who is also the identical twin of Assistant University Editor of The Daily Tar Heel Nicole Comparato, was elected over sophomore Connor Brady by a vote of 20 to 14.

Brady, who will serve as speaker pro tempore, the second-highest position in Student Congress, said he wants to be a team with Comparato.

“Paige and I will need to sit down and determine what our ideas are and how we will merge those ideas together,” he said.

Former Speaker Pro Tempore Adam Horowitz said Comparato is going to be an excellent speaker.

“She really has the ability to bring out the best in people, and she’s really good at being impartial,” Horowitz said.

After members tried to improve student government this year by rewriting the Student Code, Horowitz said he hopes Comparato will look to improve things outside of the organization.

“She’ll tackle some of the bigger issues on campus,” Horowitz said.

“The biggest one is tuition. It’s going to be an issue for the next two years. (She’ll) also just help to make student government funds more easily accessible.”

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