Campus sophomore Hitesh Kamisetty is advocating for engineering representation, mental health awareness, inclusivity in campus organizations and academic accessibility in his campaign with Student Action for the ASUC Senate.
As an industrial engineering and operations research major and co-external vice president of the Engineering Student Council, or ESC, Kamisetty said he wants to increase engineering representation in the ASUC. Citing funding issues within the engineering department, he noted his goal is to increase student accessibility for all academic resources.
“It’s crazy that students studying in a department with such valor, with such esteem, have to worry about having enough credits to graduate and getting into classes,” Kamisetty said. “Furthermore, we don’t have an actual engineering center to advocate on these issues and to accomplish more outreach to the engineering community.”
As part of the ESC, Kamisetty has aided Engineering Student Services in creating a peer mentor program to provide support and create lasting relationships within the department.
If elected to the ASUC Senate, he said that he will promote greater “community building” in engineering, particularly through events like town halls and mixers.
Kamisetty also emphasized mental health awareness for all students on campus and plans on working with Counseling and Psychological Services, University Health Services and the campus Tang Center to create a student panel on the topic of mental health. He plans on putting together a guide for students dealing with impostor syndrome and other “mental health crises.”
Because of the competitiveness of student organizations, one of Kamisetty’s primary platforms is the promotion of diversity, equity and inclusion within campus clubs.
“We see a lot of students that come from especially underrepresented backgrounds that simply don’t have access to the same resources that students from more privileged backgrounds come in with,” Kamisetty said. “Whether it be technology clubs or consulting clubs, there’s a huge disconnect.”
Kamisetty wants to work with the ASUC to upgrade resources for students. He hopes to expand the Undergraduate Research Apprentice Program and other research programs, specifically to aid students without previous experience and who are unsure of where to start.
Along with research accessibility, he also wants to push for the creation of 24-hour libraries for students to access technology and the internet.
Citing the electrical engineering and computer science department’s funding crisis, Kamisetty noted one of his main reasons for running is to advocate for increased departmental funding so students can take the classes they are interested in.
“When you see more and more of this funding crisis without much response from the ASUC, I think it also leads to a level of distrust that shouldn’t be there,” Kamisetty said. “The ASUC should be advocates of all students of all communities, and one major community of campus isn’t being represented.