The Daily Tar Heel

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Friday January 15th

Thousands wait in line for Obama speech tickets at N.C. State

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Nathan Simmons - black polo - Senior - Geology

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Brandalyn Furr came home late Monday night to find her roommates heading out the door carrying sleeping bags, snacks and an assortment of overnight necessities.

Furr, a senior at N.C. State University, grabbed her hammock and joined them. Together they headed to the center of campus to wait in line behind about 50 students already camping out.

“By that time there were a couple of hammocks already up and a couple of tents out there,” she said.

The 50 students grew into hundreds throughout the night and by Tuesday, thousands of N.C. State students were waiting in line for a chance to hear President Barack Obama speak on campus today, according to university news services.

President Obama is speaking about the American Jobs Act in Reynolds Coliseum on campus today.

The job act focuses on providing tax breaks to small businesses that hire new workers. It also proposes to increase expenditures for major infrastructure projects.

Furr said she’s interested to hear what the president has to say about jobs.

“I’m really excited to hear him speak on it, especially in light of our economic position,” she said. “With elections coming up, I’m curious to see if he’ll propose anything that might lead to a collegiate vote.”

Furr was among the first 50 students to obtain a ticket early Tuesday morning after sleeping in a hammock.

“There aren’t a lot of trees in the brickyard, so we had to stack them,” she said about her hammock. “Mine was on the top. There were two guys below me.”

While Furr and many of her friends were able to get tickets, not everyone was as lucky.

Caleb Zander, a sophomore science education major, was discouraged by the long lines.

“After seeing the super-huge line last night, I thought there weren’t going to be enough tickets available,” he said.

While all of the tickets have already been distributed to students, N.C. State employees and the public, the university is offering a number of ways for the speech to be viewed by those who won’t be able to attend it in person.

N.C. State students will be able to view the speech through Wolfbytes Channel 85 and other campus TV stations, according to the university’s website.

Traffic flow, parking and access to buildings near the coliseum will be limited for at least a portion of the day, according to N.C. State’s website.

Besides his speech at N.C. State, the president is also visiting WestStar Precision, a small business in Apex.

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