Posted on: January 22, 2021 Posted by: Glacier Staff Comments: 0

Artwork by Sarah Kauffman, Glacier Graphic Designer

By Mariam Itani, Ethan Holesha, and Joey Fernandez, COM 153 Students

Wednesday inaugurated a new day for America, as Joe Biden and Kamala Harris were sworn into office as president and vice president, and Harris made history as the first woman vice president.

The Glacier set out to get students’ reactions. Many expressed optimism about the change.

“It makes me feel like a new leaf is being turned over and that there won’t be as much chaos and negativity in the world, hopefully,” said Trisha Meyers, 20, a sophomore majoring in accounting.

Business major Kiley Simpson, 18, agreed: “I have hope that Biden will restore our country and bring everyone together. I think he will be able to stop the divide that was created the last four years.

“I was so relieved when Biden was sworn in and I’m looking forward to the next four–hopefully eight–years with Biden as my president.”

Sports management major Chris Villafuerte said he thought a lot of people felt relief when Biden was sworn in.

“Personally, I feel like Biden is very sincere when he talks and means what he says, or at least is trying hard to make things a reality,” said Villafuerte, 20. “Harris and Biden’s relationship seems very strong, and over the next four years I expect some great things from them.”

I have hope that Biden will restore our country and bring everyone together. I think he will be able to stop the divide that was created the last four years.

Kiley Simpson, 18, business major

Ethan Juarez, a 19-year-old dentistry major, was a bit more cautious in his optimism. He said questions were running through his mind when Biden was sworn in: “What kind of changes will he make right off the bat? And will he actually follow through with the promises he made when he was trying to be elected?”

He said his main concern is “getting over this virus so that life can go back to normal” and he’s hoping for “new and improved ideas and changes in our country that will hopefully speed the process up.”

One change many students were happy to see was the history-making election of a woman of color as vice president.

“I’m excited to have a new president and vice president in office,” said Caitlin Novak, 20, a sophomore majoring in social work. “I’m also excited to see myself as a woman be represented in office.”

Simpson said Harris wasn’t her first choice as the first woman to become vice president: “I was hoping Michelle Obama would be the first but Kamala is still an amazing fit.”

Villafuente said electing Harris was “a step in the right direction. The opportunities now for women are even greater, and that’s how it should be.” 

I’m excited to see myself as a woman be represented in office.

Caitlin Novak, 20, Social Work major

Junior nursing major Tavion Morris, 21, is hoping the new administration will bring positive changes for people of color: “As an African-American, I think it is a whole lot better than having a president that promotes violence as the face of the country…as long as [Biden] gets the job done as president.”

Juarez is also focused on results. “It’s nice to see that we finally have a female vice president,” he said. “However, at the end of the day, all that matters is that the person in office handles their responsibilities accordingly.”

Some students reacted to the fact that former President Donald Trump did not attend the inauguration.

“I do think he was being a sore loser for that,” said Juarez. “However, he probably felt like he got cheated by some of the voting counts, which was probably why he had no desire to be there.”

Simpson had a different take: “Honestly I think it’s great he didn’t go. He was past his expiration date.”

Sophomore biology major Julia Jimenez, 19, said the inauguration made her feel “conflicted. I am happy for the future but reflecting on the past.”

Students say they are looking to the future with hope for Biden and Harris.

“I believe they will be successful and make history,” said Simpson.

Juarez said, “I believe for the most part they will be successful. I’m not really sure how big of an impact they will have, but I’m coming in with an open mind.”