Hail to the chief?

On Friday, tens of thousands of people descended upon campus to see one man: President Barack Obama.

His visit had been the topic of conversation on campus even before it was officially announced, and students and faculty prepared for the rally that would mark only the fifth time a sitting president has visited USC. Professors cancelled classes. Students skipped study sessions. Secret Service agents searched buildings. Everyone at USC — and in Southern California — was excited for Obama.

But Friday came and went, and in its wake arose a plethora of mixed feelings. Some students were not happy that Obama’s message focused more on state and national politics than student-focused issues, while some lamented the fact that many lines to Alumni Park were poorly organized around a confusing system of different colored tickets. Many students who did not attend Obama’s speech on Friday were also upset at the inconveniences caused by having so many people on campus at once.

Still, many others felt that this was a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity, and gave the president glowing reviews on his message.

All things considered, we want to know:

What are your thoughts about Obama’s visit to USC?

What do you think? Add your two cents to the conversation by submitting a comment in the entry form below.

4 replies
  1. Kathryn
    Kathryn says:

    I would never, in general, object to a U.S. President speaking at USC. However, Mr. Obama used the campus to support political candidates rather than speak about significant national and/or world concerns. If the campus is used as a political forum, would it not be appropriate to represent all sides? Why were spokesmen from all other parties not invited to speak at the same time? USC Administration has now set a very questionable precedent in allowing one side to speak without giving the same amount of time to opposing positions. This is highly inappropriate in an academic setting. I am very disappointed. I expected higher standards of behavior at USC.

    I believe the administration needs to evaluate all outside speakers and their proposed speech topics more closely. We should all be mindful that in a lively academic environment all sides of all issues need to be presented and discussed at the same point in time.

  2. Porkman Delardo
    Porkman Delardo says:

    As an SC alum, I was excited about the presidents visit and could only pick up an audio feed after the event took place. I also accessed the 360 degree interactive photo provided by the LA times. I must say that I was moved by the entire spectacle and very proud to be a Trojan on that special day.
    Regardless of whether you agree with his politics, a visit by a sitting president is a rare event and will only add to the level of prestige our university is trying to achieve. I am tired of being USC being referred to, as the Stanford of the South or below the level of an Ivy school. We continue to move up college rankings in the various schools and overall are as high as #23 in the USNAWR.
    Sounds like the large crowds were an inconvenience to a few souls who no matter what, would find something to complain about, and in my opinion, the benefits outweigh inconviences everytime. Fight On!

  3. Aly
    Aly says:

    President Obama’s speech itself was amazing. Those of us in the crowd gawked at his ability to engage the crowd, yelled in agreement at his calls for CHANGE, and just reveled in his presence. We all know Obama isn’t doing everything we’d like him to do, otherwise there would be no national debt, war in Iraq and Afghanistan, and countless other issues. But I like to think that I took away a sense of enthusiasm and motivation to STAND UP and do SOMETHING at the rally yesterday. And for that, I am grateful. It truly was a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity.

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