Students advocate financial aid

Merrimack students and administrators visited the Statehouse on Feb. 25 to thank legislators for their ongoing support of financial aid in higher education as part of Student Financial Aid Advocacy Day.

Adrienne Montgomery, director of Merrimack’s Financial Aid Office, traveled with Amanda Abreau, associate director of the Financial Aid Office; sophomore Joseph Arena, of Whitman; sophomore Cole Ruley, of Plymouth; and junior Briana Tierney, of North Easton.

“That was the importance of going,” he said. “Just to make a statement we need more assistance to get more money.” Representatives of other colleges around the state were also taking part in the visit organized by the Association of Independent Colleges and Universities in Massachusetts (AICUM).

After brief welcoming remarks by House Speaker Robert DeLeo and AICUM President Richard Doherty, Merrimack’s delegation traveled the halls of the statehouse visiting the offices of Andover’s and North Andover’s legislators, as well as Arena’s, Ruley’s and Tierney’s hometown legislators.

Merrimack’s delegation met with state Sen. Viriato M. “Vinny” DeMacedo, who represents Ruley’s hometown of Plymouth.

“I can definitely see a lot of them who spoke to us were passionate and I believe in them,” Ruley said. “I think they are going to do their best to get something done.”