Debate begins

Chancellor Meehan takes stage, asks folks to restrict applause. Invites everyone to post debate gathering at UML Inn and Conference Center.

Candidates take stage. Facing crowd from left to right: Conroy, DeFranco, Khazei, Massie, Robinson and Warren.

7:01 pm: Chancellor Meehan opens with welcoming remarks to audience and webviewers. Mentions “live blogging” and Twitter coverage. Says how critical 2012 election will be. Urgest students to participate. Giving some background on UMass Lowell.

Explains format: Students, focus group, Herald focus group, Twitter, etc. Flexible format using discretion with follow-up questions and a 10 second per answer lightning round. Now introducing the student questioners (The “freshman” questioner is an 8 year Army veteran of 82nd AD and 7th SF Group with Bronze Star).

Candidates all wearing blue suits including DeFranco except Warren who has a red jacket over black pants. Now introducing candidates; all getting a lot of applause. Warren will be last due to seating.