President Obama visits South Florida high school - WSVN-TV - 7NEWS Miami Ft. Lauderdale News, Weather, Deco

President Obama visits South Florida high school

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SOUTHWEST MIAMI-DADE, Fla. (WSVN) -- The president of the United States along with the first lady visited South Florida Friday.

President Barack Obama and first lady Michelle Obama arrived at the Homestead Air Reserve Base aboard Air Force One, around 2 p.m., Friday.

They traveled with two South Florida Democratic representatives, Joe Garcia and Frederica Wilson. From the Homestead Air Reserve Base, the Obamas and Representatives Garcia and Wilson boarded Marine One and took a short flight to Coral Reef Senior High School.

President Obama visited Coral Reef to speak to high school seniors about the Free Applicator for Federal Student Aid, commonly known as FAFSA. President Obama chose to speak at Coral Reef because it had the second highest rate in the entire state of Florida in filling out the FAFSA forms. He also announced new initiatives to make that process easier for students.

The FAFSA form is one of the first steps a student must take in order to receive federal financial aid so that they can go on to college.

During his speech, President Obama encouraged the seniors to fill out the FAFSA forms. "My challenge today, to every high school student in America, fill out the form. Even if you think you may not qualify for financial aid, fill out the form. You might qualify," said Obama.

Students at Coral Reef said they were honored by the President's visit. "I think it's really inspirational to a lot of students around the country," said one Coral Reef student who listened to Obama's speech.

President Obama and the first lady met with a small group of students inside a classroom at Coral Reef as they filled out their FAFSA forms.

"One of the reasons we're out here is because Michelle and I are both working on encouraging school districts to adopt some of the terrific stuff that is being done out here, in order for young people to know that if they've done the work, if they're being responsible, and if they are an outstanding student, then financing should not be a barrier for them to go to college," said Obama.

President Obama spoke about financial aid, but he did not mention the crisis in Ukraine or the escalating conflict in Venezuela.

Outside the school, protesters held up signs and rallied outside of the high school during Obama's visit to the high school. Protesters complained about immigration reform and the conflict in Venezuela.

"We need him to condemn what is happening in Venezuela. We want him to stand up for us," said one protester.

The Obamas spent about two hours at Coral Reef.

Obama and the first lady are now in Key Largo with their two daughters. They are expected to spend part of their weekend on vacation in the Florida Keys at the Exclusive Ocean Reef Club Resort in Key Largo, Florida.


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