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The Richards Administration’s Office of State and External Affairs (SEA) focuses on how external changes at the local, state, federal, and international levels impact all UNC students through policy analysis and project management. Even though individual students are at Carolina temporarily, SEA believes the presence of the student body is a permanent fixture that can contribute positively to the broader Chapel Hill community. The Richards Administration will fight to ensure that students are equipped to connect with public officials and will develop relationships with prominent representatives to effectively lobby for student needs.

Meetings of the Department of State and External Affairs are held weekly on Mondays from 6:00-7:00 pm EST in Carolina Union 3502.

For all SEA inquiries, please contact

Office Goals for the Richards Administration

1. Establish a Student Community Relations Council (SCRC)

In order to effectively represent student needs and increase transparency at the local level, the Richards Administration will continue the work from the Moseley Administration in developing a diverse student-run council with representatives from the Chapel Hill Town Council, Carrboro Town Council, and Orange County.


2. Develop Resources for Affordable Housing in Chapel Hill

As many UNC students live off-campus, it is important to promote safety and financial wellbeing for students, especially when there are limited options for affordable housing. The Richards Administration will work with local Chapel Hill organizations to develop financial aid resources for off-campus students in need of affordable housing.


3. Advocate for Student Rights at the State/Federal Level

The Richards Administration intends to champion student voices through strategic advocacy campaigns with state and federal officials. There are many legislation and bills impacting student life, and SEA will spearhead relationship building and lobbying efforts on behalf of the university to voice these pressing student needs.


4. Spearhead Policy Initiatives at the International Level

The Richards Administration will conduct data analysis and policy research initiatives to better understand the needs of international students. SEA will develop strong partnerships with international universities to expand potential opportunities for students. Moreover, the Visa process can be very daunting, so SEA will distribute resources to educate international students on the process.

Nina Dakoriya (she/her)

Director of State and External Affairs ||

Nina is a senior from Greensboro, NC double majoring in Business Administration and Political Science. On campus, she previously served as the Director of Chapel Hill Town and Community Relations within State and External Affairs, as the Executive Social Justice Director of the Residence Hall Association, and as the Advocacy Chair of Partners-in-Health-Engage.

Meet Our SEA Team

Esha Parikh (she/her)

Assistant Director of State and External Affairs ||

Esha Parikh is a junior double majoring in Business Administration and Public Policy and is from Clarksburg, Maryland.In addition to student government, she is also involved with the Kenan Scholars program, the Parr Center for Ethics, and South Asian organizations. Outside of school, she enjoys reading, baking, and traveling.

Keyao/Bella Du (she/her)

Deputy Director of International Relations ||

Keyao is a sophomore from China, majoring in Media and Journalism. She actively learns and advocates for international students’ needs on campus and strives to be the liaison between the international group and the school. Outside of school, Keyao loves singing, dancing, and playing the piano.


Andrew Spratley (he/him)

Deputy Director of State and Federal Relations  ||

Andrew is a sophomore from New Bern, NC. He’s double majoring in Physics and Public Policy. During his freshman year, he served as a committee member for State and External Affairs. Currently, he is also an ambassador for Order of the Bell Tower. Andrew is excited to work to make sure students are not negatively affected by malicious policy .


Andrew Gary (he/him)

Deputy Director of Chapel Hill Town and Community Relations ||

Andrew is double majoring in Economics and History at UNC and is a life-long New Orleanian. As a two-term Louisiana Youth Advisory Council member, he gained experience advocating for more student involvement in school safety. His experience in LYAC at Boy’s Nation inspired him to found YAT in recognition of the lack of attention by government in listening to and understanding the needs of youth.