SANTA BARBARA, Calif. - Janet Napolitano, the new president of the University of California system, made a stop Friday at the University of California at Santa Barbara, amid heavy security and dozens of student protestors.
Demonstrators are upset by what they call the former Secretary of Homeland Security's "lack of experience in education, and too much experience in deportation."
Inside the Mosher Alumni House, the U.C. president met behind closed doors with 40 students, hand-picked by the Associated Student Body.
NewsChannel 3 was granted brief access to the private, hour and a half session. "I don't intend for these to be my only meetings," Napolitano told the group.
Topics ranged from the hot button issue of immigration, to freedom of speech and U.C. investments.
But it was the tone of some students that hit a nerve for one senior. "To be honest,
the way she handled some of the input from the crowd," said Paul Malone, president of U.C.S.B.'s Veteran Organization. "There were some very pointed and strong opinions that she was able to field with grace and accuracy."
President Napolitano has come up with seven initiatives after these campus meetings with students, in the three months she's held the post. They include research funding for underprivileged graduates and a tuition freeze.
U.C.S.B. was her ninth campus tour; U.C. Berkeley will be her last stop.