UVA Prepares for Secretary of State John Kerry's Visit
The University of Virginia is preparing for international attention as Secretary of State John Kerry makes his first foreign policy speech to the world from Old Cabell Hall on Wednesday.
Kerry's visit will create some inconvenience around UVA. Albemarle County police say their officers will escort Secretary Kerry's motorcade from the airport to UVA without closing any roads. Even without road closures, the university is warning of extra traffic and security around Old Cabell Hall.
Tuesday, crews prepared the stage at Old Cabell Hall for the newly appointed Secretary of State's first foreign policy address. Crews are removing seats to make room for a rush of international reporters.
More than 60 members of the media plan to attend - from the major American networks to Al-Jazeera.
UVA's office of major events is working with police and the state department to make sure UVA is prepared.
"It's really quite a long list. There's a lot of logistical things that have to get done in preparation for a large event of this kind of international magnitude in a short time frame," said McGregor McCance, UVA spokesman.
Tuesday afternoon, students, faculty and staff were able to pick up tickets to the event that they won in an online lottery.
"All of my friends signed up, and I'm the only one who got a ticket. So, they're all really jealous, but I'm going to go," said Mairead Murphy, a third-year student at UVA.
UVA students, faculty and staff will fill 75 percent of the 826 available seats in Old Cabell Hall's auditorium.
"I wanted to hear that live and try to understand better the direction the Obama administration is going in and how he wants to take it," said UVA employee John Alexander.
UVA President Teresa Sullivan, 5th District Congressman Robert Hurt, and Senator Tim Kaine will join Secretary Kerry.
Doors open for ticket holders at 9 a.m. The speech is set to begin at 11 a.m. UVA will also live stream the speech in its entirety.
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