By Carol Moran
Ashford School 7th graders Michelle R. and Yuba W. were lucky enough to attend the Presidential Inauguration. Both girls said that they did not actually get to see President Obama because of the crowds, but they were excited to just be there. "I got to witness history," Michelle said. When I get older, I can tell my grandchildren I was there," said Yuba.
Michelle went as part of the Junior Presidential Youth Inauguration Conference with other students from around the country. Teacher Charlie Wilcox nominated her last year for the National Youth Leadership Conference, and that led her to go. Yuba went with her family.
The inauguration was "cold, and very loud. Everyone was screaming, 'We need change now,” according to Michelle. She says a highlight was getting to meet so many different people from all around the country. Yuba agreed. “Everyone was really nice, very polite."
The girls also listened to other leaders speak, including former Secretary of State Colin Powell and former Vice President Al Gore. Michelle was especially struck with Colin Powell. "I really liked him. He had dreamed of becoming a leader. He was a great speaker."