Even earlier than the identify “Natasha Obama” was introduced as one of many tons of of scholars graduating from USC’s Dornsife School of Letters, Arts and Sciences on Friday morning, buzz was constructing about some acquainted faces on campus.
Photographs of her mother and father — the forty fourth president and former first woman — sitting behind cap-and-gown-clad college students at Allyson Felix Area had been posted on social media, whereas college students on the ceremony texted mates in different faculties concerning the high-profile visitors.
Kim Demu ended up sitting only a part over from Sasha’s mother and father, Barack and Michelle, and older sister Malia — however with greater than a dozen U.S. Secret Service brokers in between them. Nonetheless, she was thrilled to see the household she lengthy revered, and snapped a number of images.
“I knew [Sasha Obama] transferred from [University of] Michigan to right here, however I had no thought she was graduating on this class with my niece,” Demu mentioned. “Very thrilling!”
Sasha Obama crosses the stage on the USC Dornsife School commencement ceremony. Her mother and father and sister cheered her on from the viewers. (Grace Toohey)
Sasha Obama, 21, beamed as she crossed the stage to commemorate her new sociology diploma, as her sister and fogeys applauded within the viewers. The announcement of her identify was met with virtually common cheers from the group.
However in any other case, the household stored as low profile as attainable at USC’s commencement festivities, scooting out of the ceremony quickly after Sasha Obama left the stage.
“I used to be so excited to see Obama and Michelle,” mentioned Michelle Davies, who additionally graduated Friday from the faculty. “I needed an image [with them] so unhealthy, however then they left early. If I’d have gotten an image, I’d have handed out.”
The political science main mentioned she knew Sasha from round campus, noting that the African American neighborhood at USC is fairly small — however mentioned it was a distinct stage to see Barack and Michelle Obama on Friday.
“I waved at them and Michelle waved again at me,” she mentioned, virtually giddy.
The Obamas didn’t handle the group or take images with attendees however cheered on the graduates and listened to the audio system. As Barack Obama walked out, he congratulated different mother and father and relations.
Alfred Chen and his mates rushed to the Dornsife School ceremony after getting a textual content that the Obamas had been there.
“We tried to seek out them however we will’t, there’s so many individuals,” mentioned Chen, who graduated from the engineering faculty Friday. Chen’s group even posed for a photograph with the Dornsife School ceremony behind him, within the hopes that the Obamas may be within the background. (Sadly, they weren’t. Chen and his mates missed the household by about quarter-hour.)
Sharon MacDonnell had extra luck as she waited for her son to stroll throughout the stage. She was about as shut as was attainable to the Obamas as they walked out early from the ceremony.
“I came visiting to see him after which I noticed all the blokes in fits,” mentioned MacDonnell, who snapped some good images of the previous president. She mentioned as a USC alumni, it was significantly particular to see the previous first household there.
Sasha was simply 7 years outdated when her household moved into the White Home in 2009. In 2019, she graduated from highschool in Washington, D.C., two years after her father’s two phrases as president. She initially attended the College of Michigan however transferred to USC.
Malia Obama additionally lives in L.A., the place she’s working within the movie trade.