January 4, 2022

Student Senate president Mayes wants to make students’ lives better

Wayne State Student Senate president Sailor Mayes poses for a photo.
Wayne State Student Senate president Sailor Mayes hopes to help students in any way she can.

Sailor Mayes has a number of objectives for her time as Wayne State Student Senate president, but they all serve one purpose: “My goal is to make students’ lives better,” Mayes said. “If students have problems, I want to fix it.”

Helping students has been Mayes’ top goal since she was elected Student Senate president in May 2020 after serving on the Student Senate since her first year.

“I enjoy that I am able to stand up for students,” Mayes said. “I know that there are a lot of students who feel they’re not heard as much as maybe the Student Senate is, so if students come up to me and say they have a problem, I immediately try to fix it. I want to advocate for students. I just like to embody the students, and I want to be able to represent them.”

A major goal of Mayes’ is to make Wayne State more environmentally friendly.

“I really want to incorporate a lot of green initiatives within the university,” Mayes said. “Stuff that's ecofriendly. I know that a couple of our project groups are actually working on sustainability problems within the university. I'm actually creating a resolution to the university about green initiatives.”

Mayes is also proud of some of the initiatives the senate has already put into place during this school year.

“One of the things that we've passed this year is the menstrual product pilot program, which is in a couple of the bathrooms within Wayne State University. It allows free tampons to students who are in need of those products,” Mayes said. “And we plan on expanding that program, as long as the pilot program runs well.”

Mayes said the Student Senate has a huge board listing all the projects they are currently working on, including a sexual assault prevention program, an amphitheater, creating a four-year plan for all majors, an urban gardening initiative, and adding meditation and prayer rooms around campus, among others.

Sailor Mayes talks to students.
Sailor Mayes talks to students.

“Our student government has done a lot and we have so much more in the works,” Mayes said. “We have a very passionate group.”

Mayes has been working to make a difference since a young age. She worked on a number of political campaigns while she was still in high school.

“I've been involved in politics ever since 2016,” Mayes said. “That election, (which occurred) when I was a junior in high school, motivated me to get involved, and I started working on Elissa Slotkin’s campaign. While I was on her campaign, it really got me excited to actually want to vote and work within the government.”

Mayes was on a trip to Washington, D.C. when someone spotted her Wayne State shirt and stopped to talk to her.

“Stuart Baum, who was the Student Senate president at the time, was also there for another conference. He saw that I had a Wayne State shirt on, so he ran up to me and asked if I went to Wayne State,” Mayes said. “I told him yes and he asked what year, and I told him I was going to be a freshman. He said, ‘You should run for student government.’ So I did.”

Mayes’ is majoring in political science and communications. She originally wanted to become an elected official, but now her career plans have changed.

“I've kind of realized my passion for the environment and I would like to work for the EPA or WWF (World Wildlife Foundation). That would be amazing,” Mayes said. “I would love to help conserve land for animals and stop pollution.”

Mayes wasn’t sure where she wanted to go to college, but one tour made her ready to become a Warrior.

“As soon as I toured the campus, I loved it,” Mayes said. “I also loved the community, the tours that I went on. The students were just so awesome, and I just felt very welcomed here. I tell everybody to think about Wayne State because I feel like I’m really able to excel in life. I'm thankful for that and it’s because of Wayne State University.”

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