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Columbia Spectator Staff

6:00 p.m.--Spectator has confirmed with President Bollinger's Office that there are 200 seats in the lottery for full and part-time students for admission to the September 11th event featuring John McCain and Barack Obama, CC '83.

Columbia has released details about the process by which students will be able to try to obtain tickets to next Thursday's joint appearance of presidential candidates Senator Barack Obama (D-Ill.) and Senator John McCain (R-Ari.) at Roone Arledge Auditorium.

Registration for the ticket lottery that will determine attendance at the Sept. 11 event of non-partisan coalition ServiceNation will be open on Friday, Sept. 5, from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. at, according to a school-wide e-mail from University Programs.

According to the e-mail, the lottery drawing "will be monitered by students," and results will be disseminated via e-mail on Monday, Sept. 8. Students must then present their IDs when they pick up their non-transferable tickets in person. The event starts at 7 p.m., but doors will open at 4:30 p.m. and close at 6:30 p.m.

The event, officially known as ServiceNation Presidential Forum, will begin in Alfred Lerner Hall's Roone Arledge Auditorium with an introduction from New York Governor David Paterson. The event is the first day of ServiceNation's two-day launch summit. The Sept. 12 portion, which will not be held at Columbia, will feature speeches from New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg, California Governor Arnold Schwarzenneger, Senator Hillary Rodham Clinton (D-NY) and other public leaders.

According to the e-mail, Senators John McCain and Barack Obama will then make remarks "on a national stage" about public service in America. TIME Magazine Editor Richard Stengel and PBS NewsHour Anchor Judy Woodruff will moderate the dialogue.

Since Columbia is not sponsoring the event, student seating will be limited. According to ServiceNation's website, about 600 people have signed up for the Summit, but it is unclear whether all attendees will be present at Columbia's event. Campus buzzed on Thursday as students universally expressed a strong desire to attend the first event during which McCain and Obama will first appear together as the official nominees of their parties.

According to the e-mail, students from each school of the University (including affiliates Barnard and Teachers College) may register for the lottery. Roone Arledge has a seating capacity of about 1,500.

For those less fortunate, the e-mail says, Columbia will arrange "alternate viewing options," but did not specify what that would entail.

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