CGI U opening plenary session tickets limited

Unable to get sufficient students to sign up for its Gateway STEM High School service project, Washington University decided to bribe volunteers with tickets to Friday’s opening plenary session for Clinton Global Initiative University.

Not all students, though, said they knew about the incentive when they signed up.

Other students received tickets to the session through an online lottery system. The only Washington University students who will be able to see additional sessions throughout the weekend are the 200 student delegates selected by CGI U.

The University has not specified the total number of tickets it has given out to the opening plenary moderated by Bill Clinton. Many were given out last Saturday in return for doing service at Gateway STEM High School, but that wasn’t the initial plan.

“Some of [the students] might not have known [they were getting tickets]; we made the decision partway through the process,” Rob Wild, assistant vice chancellor, said.

Stephanie Kurtzman, director of the Community Service Office, said there were not enough students interested in the CGI U service trip without the added ticket incentive.

“We made the decision to give out tickets because there were not enough people to sign up for the service trip,” Kurtzman said. “We only had 40 percent of the people we needed, and lots didn’t sign up or weren’t available.”

The additional student tickets will only allow entry to the hour-and-a-half opening plenary session in the Athletic Complex on Friday from 6:30-8 p.m. Additional tickets may also be released to the waitlist and through standby on the day of the event to fill all seats available in the upper level of the AC.

“If people don’t pick up their tickets by the deadline, they’ll forfeit their ticket and we’ll move down the list,” Kurtzman said. “There will also be what we call a ‘holding area’ for the waitlist to get every Wash. U. student we can inside, in lottery order.”

No tickets will be given out for the closing plenary session that will be Stephen Colbert’s interview with Bill Clinton for “The Colbert Report.”

“Only the 200 delegates will get to go to Colbert,” Kurtzman said. “[CGI U] didn’t want to open it up to the broader campus lottery. My understanding is that they didn’t want to fill the upper level of the Athletic Complex for whatever they’re doing.”

Freshman Brittany Luntz said she was not expecting a ticket to the opening plenary session by going on the service trip on Saturday.

“We painted walls and cleaned up the cafeteria,” Luntz said. “When we left, they gave me a ticket. I didn’t know I was getting a ticket until I got there.”

An additional service trip for CGI U participants and University students will be this Saturday at 9:00 a.m. with opening remarks from Bill and Chelsea Clinton.

Freshman Hannah Landman received a ticket through the lottery on WebSTAC but said she does not know if she will be able to attend.

“I’m excited; I think it’s an awesome opportunity. I just wish it weren’t the same night as [Alpha Epsilon Phi’s] formal, but I might still try to go to half,” Landman said.

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