The viewing was held in the Caucus Room and in the lobby of the Hinckley building to accommodate an overflow of students.
"He hit it out of the park," Republican supporter Craig Barrett said. "Mitt Romney did amazingly well."
The students listened to President Barack Obama and Republican candidate Mitt Romney spar back and forth over issues including the economy, job growth, taxes, national debt and health care.
Obama beat Romney in a recent straw poll at the university and students remain split on who should lead the country.
"I believe Obama is the better candidate for women on a whole, for students on a whole and the middle class on a whole," Political Science major Taisia Auston said.
Students say they're eager to watch the next two debates this month on Oct. 16 and Oct. 22. The debates will also be aired at the Hinckley Institute of Politics at the University of Utah.