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Inauguration Day…

Berkeley crowds for inauguration

…live via satellite (at UC Berkeley).

Like thousands of other large and small gatherings around the world, UC Berkeley provided a public venue for a viewing of the inauguration of President Barack Obama.

Students, faculty, staff, and friends gathered en masse in Upper Sproul Plaza to watch the inauguration proceedings on a giant video screen.

Early Cal crowds for inauguration

The Berkeley crowd was jubilant—cheering for Senator Dianne Feinstein, Michelle Obama, and Vice President-elect Joe Biden—and irreverent—voicing disapproval of outgoing President Bush and especially outgoing Vice President Cheney. The loudest applause was reserved for Barack Obama: during his introduction, when he took the oath of office, and at the conclusion of his inauguration speech.

While the millions in attendance in Washington D.C. may have been more reserved during President Obama’s speech, spontaneous cheering broke out among the Cal viewers at the mention of restoring “science to its rightful place,” the inclusion of “non-believers” as Americans, and the promise to “transform our schools and colleges and universities to meet the demands of a new age.” Clearly this was a speech that the assembled UC Berkeley community had been waiting to hear from a president they had been longing to see in office.

Berkeley crowds for inauguration

A peaceful transfer of power appreciated greatly at the University of California, Berkeley.

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