The Palo Alto High School freshman class elected Jaiveer Sandhu and Claire Billman as freshman president and vice-president, respectively, for the Associated Student Body (ASB) on Aug. 28.
Sandhu brings extensive leadership experience from participating in student government at Jordan Middle School. He was the only student to be an officer on the student council for all three years and served as class president in eighth grade. Billman, however, never took part in student government during middle school, a decision she has since regretted.
“I had decided in seventh and eighth grade that I wanted to be in a leadership position, but I never had the courage to run,” Billman said. “Looking back, I was full of regret in middle school and I just decided, ‘Why am I full of regret in middle school? I’m only 14 years old.’ So I decided to run.”
Both Sandhu and Billman agree that class unity is a top priority for the freshman class.
“I want to make sure our class gets to know each other so we can be more united,” Sandhu said. “Every freshman should be comfortable at Paly and feel that they have an important place in our class.”
Sandhu believes he can increase class unity by adding more social events and spirit days.
“I want to push for more social events, like dances, movie nights and other social gatherings to get to know each other more,” Sandhu said. “I think spirit days would be a fun way to for all students to dress up and show their spirit throughout the entire year instead of just one week.”
Sandhu also wants to improve communication between students and ASB, ensuring accurate representation of the freshmen class and a diversity of ideas.
“Many times students will have great ideas but they don’t always share them,” Sandhu said. “I want to be able to communicate all [of their] ideas to the rest of the school.”
Billman is impressed with all the talent that the freshman class has to offer and hopes to unify them throughout the year.
“I don’t think there has been or ever will be a group of freshmen more talented than we are today, so smart, so funny and so kind,” Billman said.
Both Sandhu and Billman are excited to participate in Spirit Week and show Paly all the spirit that the Class of 2018 has to offer.
“One of my main goals as freshman class president is to increase class spirit,” Sandhu said. “The upperclassmen better not underestimate the freshmen, because we have a lot of Viking pride and spirit.”