With many damaged homes yet to be repaired in Puerto Rico, Gov. Andrew Cuomo pitched in Monday.
Cuomo and a delegation of New York elected officials were in Puerto Rico to survey the recovery and drop in on some students who are receiving college credit for their handy work.
"It's something you can't pass on. It's a firsthand experience to seeing what people need and what we can do here," City University of New York student Yadira Vargas said. "I think it's awesome that they welcome us with open hands."
"I'm studying civil engineering, so I'm taking a class that complimented this trip. So what I do is I actually file field reports after every work day, and at the end of the day I will get three credits for it," said City University of New York student Kenny Rodriguez, who said he has been on the island for a week.
A total of 500 SUNY and CUNY students are expected to rotate through the program in two-week tours. So far, they have rebuilt or repaired 90 homes, with a goal of 150 before the program ends August 29.
Cuomo has been taking an increasingly pointed stance against President Trump, challenging his administration's response to Puerto Rico.
"It was Mother Nature with Hurricane Maria, and that we leave to Mother Nature," Cuomo said at a press conference. "But it was Father Trump who compounded the problem by not having an appropriate federal response."
The governor has also bashed the Trump administration's treatment of undocumented immigrants through U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement, known as ICE. His tough talk and trips to Puerto Rico come less than two months before he goes before voters in a Democratic primary.
On Monday, the governor also pardoned seven immigrants who had committed non-violent crimes but were nevertheless targeted for deportation. None had committed any crimes within the last ten years.
"They are on a jihad to deport as many people as they can who they believe are not in the United States legally," Cuomo said about the Trump administration.