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UCA students take part in Inauguration Day

Posted: January 21, 2013 - 11:16am
Chris Melendez and Jared Lareau, students at the University of Central Arkansas, cheer when they catch a sight of President Barack Obama during the morning activities at Washington D.C. Monday. COURTNEY SPRADLIN PHOTO
Chris Melendez and Jared Lareau, students at the University of Central Arkansas, cheer when they catch a sight of President Barack Obama during the morning activities at Washington D.C. Monday. COURTNEY SPRADLIN PHOTO

Forty-fourth President Barack Obama was ceremoniously sworn in for a second term Monday before an estimated 800,000 gathered in the heart of Washington D.C.

Slideshow: UCA Day at inauguration

Attending the 57th ceremony, which fell on Martin Luther King, Jr. Day, was a group of about 300 Arkansans, 15 of which were University of Central Arkansas students whose passions or credentials set them apart from other applicants who petitioned to represent the school on a Capitol trip with the Arkansas Martin Luther King, Jr. Commission.

University of Central Arkansas student Jared Lareau said as he walked to the National Mall Monday he is especially thankful for the opportunity to see this inauguration ceremony because he campaigned for the president.

"Seeing this really is the greatest thing for me," he said.

The Martin Luther King, Jr. Commission, based out of Little Rock, works to promote racial equality, according to its director.

President Obama's inaugural ceremony in 2009 was the first time the Commission organized a trip to the nation's Capitol.

Commission director DuShun Scarbrough said he elected to forgo other celebrations around Martin Luther King, Jr. Day to take as many as possible to see the first black president take an oath of office for a second term.

Scarbrough said attending the ceremony on Martin Luther King, Jr. Day is another way of "promoting the King legacy."

"I wanted to give (the students) the opportunity to see first-hand the voting system and its outcome. Everyone here has different political backgrounds, but we're all here coming together to support our Commander and Chief."

Students from three colleges and one high school made up about one-third of the MLK group.

 

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