The Daily Illini

Students react to limited Obama tickets

By Samantha Boyle and Therese Pokorney, Assistant Daytime News Editors

Former President Barack Obama will speak at Foellinger Auditorium Friday, but chances are slim for those wanting to attend.

“I’m willing to miss work to go see him,” said Jessica Livas, junior in LAS. “The chances of me getting a ticket are so low that I don’t even know if I should request off work or not.”

All undergraduate, graduate and professional students from the University, as well as students from the Chicago and Springfield campuses, were able to request tickets through an online form.

Jon Davis, interim director of Institute of Government & Public Affairs, said 1,000 students in the University System will be randomly selected to attend.

“I kind of wish it was just a speech for this campus, that would be cool,” said Amarilys Ramos, sophomore in DGS. “I would be really upset if I didn’t get tickets.”

There are over 83,000 total students across the University System. If every one of them requested a ticket, each student would have a 1.19 percent chance of actually receiving one.

“It’s kind of annoying because it’s such a cool thing that Obama is coming here and such a small percent of people are going to actually see him,” said Livas.

Livas said she wasn’t a very big fan of Obama but is still excited to have a former president coming to campus.  Livas said if President Donald Trump spoke at the University, a ton of people would go whether they liked him or not.

“I hope a lot of students sign up and realize how lucky we are to have that happen here,” she said.

Meghan Lapham, sophomore in LAS, said she thinks President Trump would not attract a crowd as big as Obama will.

“With a president from Illinois, Obama’s speech is going to be a positive thing for campus,” she said. “Where as with Trump, it would kind of be the opposite.”

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