President Obama’s planned visit to Northwestern University in Evanston on Thursday is the first to the school by a sitting president since Dwight Eisenhower received an honorary law degree in 1954.

University officials note that Obama has been to NU before, when — as a U.S. Senator — he received an honorary law degree and gave the school’s commencement address in 2006.

Obama is scheduled to deliver a message on the economy to students at NU’s Kellogg School of Management during a speech at Cahn Auditorium at 1:15 p.m. Thursday.

The speech is scheduled to be live-streamed on the web at

Northwestern President Morton Schapirio said he’s pleased Obama chose NU as the location “to make a major address about the economy and his plans to keep expanding opportunity for Americans.”

Before Eisenhower’s appearance 60 years ago, the only time a sitting U.S. president visited NU, according to University Archivist Kevin Leonard, came in 1903 when Theodore Roosevelt showed up during a goodwill tour of the west.

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Bill Smith is the editor and publisher of Evanston Now.

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