Biden, Harris sworn in as president, vice president of the United States

Minnesota State University, Mankato teachers, students reflect on inauguration and current events
Updated: Jan. 20, 2021 at 7:23 PM CST
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MANKATO, Minn. (KEYC) — It’s a historic day in Washington D.C. as the world watches President Joe Biden and Vice President Kamala Harris get sworn into the presidency.

Biden took the oath of office, becoming the 46th President of the United States.

Biden delivered his speech in front of a sea of flags because of security concerns and the pandemic.

In his inaugural speech, he called for unity in America.

“Disagreement must not lead to disunion and I pledge this to you: I will be a president for all Americans – all Americans,” he said.

History was made when Kamala Harris raised her hand to take the oath of office, becoming the first woman and person of color to serve as vice president.

Meanwhile, former President Donald Trump made an early morning departure from the White House.

At a farewell ceremony at Joint Base Andrews, he did not acknowledge the new president by name, while promising to be back soon.

“I will be watching, I will be listening and I will tell you that the future of this country has never been better. I wish the new administration great luck and great success,” Trump said.

Biden assumes his first day in office two weeks after the attack on the U.S. Capitol and amid other current events, which students and teachers at Minnesota State University, Mankato are talking about in their classrooms.

Teachers like associate political science professor Dr. Amelia Pridemore reflected on teaching while living through this current chapter of history.

“I try to be a voice of reason, but a voice of reason that helps them answer questions on their own,” she said.

Pridemore said learning about current events is a time to reflect.

“I was 20 years old when 9/11 happened. I remember being a student like them. I was a student journalist starting out, and for this to happen. And so the thing I always tell them when they’re shocked, confused, is to sometimes step back, take a breather and make sure that we use this as a time to make things better,” she said.

Student and President of College Democrats Chris Russert said he’s been able to talk about current events in the classroom and with his peers.

“Something we’re talking about a lot in our classes is that we’re sort of in an age of fracture and continuation of things,” he said. “Just having a place where we can sit down and where we can discuss and process these things has made a world of a difference. I hope our new president does stuff to help us out in terms of priorities, both, like I said I’m looking to get a job in the new future. I’m hoping my early 20s in this near future is going to work out a lot better.”

KEYC News Now did try to reach out to the College Republicans but did not hear back.

President Biden signed his first executive orders Wednesday. Aides said he plans to sign actions that will reverse his predecessor’s orders on immigration, climate change and the handline of the pandemic.

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