The Student Congress Rules and Judiciary Committee confirmed the director of state and external affairs position Tuesday night, helping to fill the cabinet of Student Body President-elect Houston Summers.
Diana Dayal was appointed director of state and external affairs later than the rest of the cabinet because she was absent to lobby Congress for the third annual ACC student advocacy trip in Washington, D.C. last week.
Dayal’s responsibilities will include advocating for students at the town, state and national levels, she said.
“At UNC-Chapel Hill, we go and we represent the student body and we say, ‘Hey, these are things we want changed in the budget, these are policies we want implemented,’” Dayal said.
She said she wants to strengthen the relationship with the closest external body — the town of Chapel Hill.
She said she wants to ensure the executive branch has students sitting on town committees, engaging with issues that affect both students and the community.
“It’s really important for us to have student voice on it, rather than us always being reactive,” Dayal said. “My hope is to have those delegates held much more accountable. In years past, we haven’t really done a good job as student government in terms of holding those people accountable and getting that information broadcasted out.”
Dayal said she considers her most important duty to be establishing a strong relationship with state legislature.
“It’s a really big deal when people in the state legislature recognize us as student government,” she said.
The committee also confirmed two judiciary appointments: student Honor Court chairman and student attorney general.
Will Almquist was appointed the student Honor Court chairman after serving on the court for two years.
He said he thinks the Honor Court’s relationship with the rest of student government is communication-oriented.
“So, ultimately, the Honor Court has a pretty well-defined set of responsibilities that doesn’t necessarily require the direct involvement of student government, but it directs interests that affect student government and, consequently, the whole campus,” he said.
Ina Kosova was appointed the student attorney general by Student Body President Andrew Powell, who did not attend Tuesday’s meeting.
“I started on staff my freshman year and so this has sort of defined my college experience, being part of the honor system,” Kosova said.