Freshmen Emma Hammerson and Owen Dulik were elected president and vice president of the freshmen class, respectively on Aug. 30. Hammerson ran against David Duggan and Dulik ran unopposed.

Each candidate gave a brief speech to the freshmen class before voting commenced. The official results were announced later that day on the Facebook page of the Associated Student Body (ASB).

Hammerson has high hopes for her first year in ASB, and is already figuring out how to increase grade-wide synergy and communication in order to bond the grade together.

“My plans for this year are to help make this year be the best it can be, and to let all the freshman students feel like they have a say in everything that goes on in terms of the freshman events, and activities,” Hammerson said.

Dulik is looking forward to using ASB to channel plans on how to improve the freshmen’s first year in high school.

“It feels really nice being on ASB because I have a lot of ideas to improve our experience,” Dulik said. “I would like create a lot of freshmen-only events for our grade to bond and unify.

Despite being faced with the daunting task of representing a grade comprised of roughly 500 students, the duo remains positive, and looks forward to the challenges of the upcoming year.

“It feels awesome to know that I get to lead our class,” Hammerson said.

Dulik is also excited to be able to represent the class of 2016, but also expressed different views on the relationship between student government and the student body.

“I don’t really think of [being on ASB] as leading as much as working with everyone in the grade to make sure everyone has a great year,” Dulik said.

Hammerson is trying to become more involved in a diverse array of activities her freshman year, since she did not feel like she did enough during her middle school years. She believes ASB is a great way to help the school out while at the same time developing valuable leadership qualities that can benefit her later in life.

“In middle school I was involved in activities, but I didn’t hold an office, and this year I decided I wanted to be a lot more involved and have more input into our freshman year,” Hammerson said.  “I knew running for ASB would be a way to do that.”

Whereas Hammerson’s focus in middle school was not civics-oriented, Dulik did take part it student government, serving on student council at Crystal Springs Uplands School.

“I worked on student council at Crystal and I liked it, but I’m really looking forward to high school student government because I feel that it provides a much greater opportunity to positively affect the community,” Dulik said.

Since Dulik did not attend a Palo Alto middle school, he admits that he does not know many of his peers. However, he states that he is getting to know many more fellow freshmen and is actively discussing issues with the students he represents.

“I’ve been trying to get to know everyone, through classes, hanging out and more.” Dulik said. “I’ve also been discussing spirit week with people as that’s an upcoming important event that Emma and I are focusing on in ASB.”

Hammerson and Dulik have been on ASB for less than a month, however, the duo feels that their work has already begun. Hammerson has already been very involved in her job by thinking of new ways to improve the grade’s life on campus.

“I’ve only been in this position for a couple weeks, but so far I’m really impressed with the people and their ideas for the school,” Hammerson said.

Dulik, vice president of the freshman class, also shows passion for this year’s ASB.

“So far ASB has been really fun and a great experience,” Dulik said

More experienced ASB members are already impressed with Hammerson and Dulik’s performance so far. Spirit Commissioner and senior Bria Vicenti thinks the freshmen have worked well despite being in the intimidating position of being the only freshmen in their class.

“They’re both really enthusiastic and they’re trying extremely hard which is a sign they’re going to do really well in their offices,” Vicenti said. “I’m really excited to be on ASB with them for the rest of the year.”

Senior class Vice President Josh Stabinsky thinks Hammerson and Dulik show a lot of promise for great work.

“This happening duo really brings the energy,” Stabinsky said.

Overall the pair of freshmen are excited to be in student government, and look forward to helping to shape their grade’s first year of high school.

“This year will be a very memorable year,” Hammerson said.

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