POSTED: Monday, May 9, 2011 - 3:38pm
UPDATED: Monday, May 9, 2011 - 5:41pm
EL PASO – President Obama's visit to El Paso is a big deal to folks around the borderland; and students at UTEP are no exception. Hundreds of them waited in line this morning to score a ticket, to watch the president deliver a speech at the Chamizal National Memorial, tomorrow.
Jacqueline Macias is a freshman at UTEP. She said she made sure she was in line at 6 a.m.
“I really want to see President Obama. I think it's a good opportunity...especially [for] college students here at UTEP to go. And, I wasn't able to vote in the last election, so I want to hear his views on immigration,” said Macias.
Others said, the president's visit to El Paso is historic, and they want to be a part of it.
“I guess I just want to see Obama. I mean, he's a very historic figure for the United States...he's the first African-American president,” said UTEP junior, Ricky Hernandez.
UTEP received 500 tickets to distribute to students, faculty and staff. Catie McCorry-Andalis, who is the Assistant Vice President for Student Life at UTEP, said she wasn't surprised so many students turned out to score a ticket.
“Our students and our faculty and staff know that this is a fantastic opportunity for them. A lot of them are Obama supporters themselves and they just know that this is a once in a lifetime opportunity to see a sitting president,” said McCorry-Andalis.
While immigration reform is expected to top the president's agenda during his speech, one student said Mr. Obama should also tackle national security.
“Maybe [he should] bring up the Osama situation right now, and what's going to happen with retaliation...I think that would be really important. [It's] what people want to hear, especially right now, because that just happened a week ago,” added Macias.
The president's speech will mark his first major address on the subject of immigration, this year.