Former President Barack Obama is returning to the University of Chicago on Tuesday for a live taping of "The Axe Files" with David Axelrod, director of UChicago’s Institute of Politics.
Obama’s visit to campus is his third in recent years and continues his considerable connection to UChicago-from teaching at the Law School for more than a decade before being elected to the U.S. Senate in 2004 to the launch earlier this year of the Obama Foundation Scholars Program at the Harris School of Public Policy.
Tuesday’s conversation between Obama and Axelrod, who served as chief strategist and senior adviser to the president, will focus on the 10-year anniversary of Obama’s historic election in 2008, including shared experiences on the campaign, and the former president’s current work, including the Obama Foundation and his dedication to civic leadership and community engagement.
Axelrod, AB’76, founded the Institute of Politics in 2013 as an extracurricular program designed to ignite in young people a passion for politics and public service. He launched "The Axe Files" podcast in September 2015, and since then, has released over 280 episodes, including interviews with key figures in the political world and beyond, including Mitt Romney, Nancy Pelosi, Jon Stewart, Ta-Nehisi Coates, Doris Kearns Goodwin, John McCain and Justin Trudeau.
The conversation between Obama and Axelrod, which is opened to UChicago students and sold out, is set to start at 11:30 a.m. and will be posted upon the event’s conclusion on the Axe Files website. Return here for updated coverage of the former president’s visit to UChicago.
Read more about President Obama’s connections to the University below:
Obama announces program for emerging leaders
The Obama Foundation and the University of Chicago on Feb. 28 announced the Obama Foundation Scholars Program, a new program at the Harris School of Public Policy to support the next generation of leaders making an impact on issues in their communities and around the world.
Students in the Obama Foundation Scholars Program at Harris will pursue a master’s degree with an emphasis on international development and policy. Students also will participate in a range of leadership activities outside the classroom led by the Obama Foundation. Some of these foundation activities will include experiences throughout Chicago and the South Side. By engaging with the local community, students will have the opportunity to complement what they learn in the classroom and also to bring their unique perspectives to Chicago.
Obama talks with students at first public event since presidency
Former President Barack Obama returned to the University of Chicago on April 24, 2017 to discuss a key priority for his time after the White House-helping to inspire and prepare the next generation of civic leaders.
The former president gathered on stage at UChicago’s Reva and David Logan Center with students from around Chicago for his first public event since ending his second term. In a wide-ranging conversation, Obama talked about his own introduction to public service as a community organizer on Chicago’s South Side and asked students from schools including UChicago and Kenwood Academy about their own involvement in civic engagement and how to create new ways for their peers to participate.
Obama recalls his time at Law School
President Barack Obama returned to his academic roots at the Law School on April 7, 2016 to make the case for U.S. Supreme Court nominee Merrick Garland in a wide-ranging, emphatic, and at times professorial conversation with law students, faculty, and other attendees.
Describing Garland as "an eminently qualified jurist," Obama told the crowd in the Law School’s Harold J. Green Lounge that if the Senate does not give such nominees a hearing it would mean that partisan polarization is "seeping entirely into the judicial system" and threatening the integrity of the judicial branch. "At that point, people lose confidence in the courts... and our democracy cannot afford that," Obama said.
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