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Chancellor Holden Thorp will speak Wednesday about finding a job after college. PHOTO: UNC.

Why do we go to college?

For some people the answer is complex: They want to gain knowledge in their chosen field or to better themselves. For others it is simpler. They want to gain enough skills to get a job.

This is the topic of Chancellor Holden Thorps lecture Feb. 1 called The J word: Finding Work in a Troubled Economy .

The event will be held in the Great Hall in the Student Union from 7 p.m. to 8 p.m.

During the event, Thorp will explain resources, statistics and other information that can help students get ahead in the job search.

Buck Goldstein and Julia Sprunt Grumbles will also speak.

Goldstein is the University Entrepreneur in Residence, which means he is helping the university become more entrepreneurial in its endeavors. He is also a professor in the department of economics.¬†He and¬†Thorp co-authored, “Engines of Innovation: The Entrepreneurial University in the Twenty-First Century.” In the book, the two explain the pivotal role that they feel that research universities play in societal change.

Grumbles is a 1975 UNC alumna and retired vice president of Turner Broadcasting who serves on the Carolina First Steering Committee and co-chairs the Carolina Women’s Leadership Council. She also served on the chancellor search committee that appointed Thorp.

President Barack Obama spoke at N.C. State today to pitch the American Jobs Act, a $447 billion bill of tax cuts, infrastructure, and job benefits intended to revitalize the economy.

“That’s what we’ve got to get back to,” he said. “That’s why I came to Raleigh today.”

Obama spoke to a wildly enthusiastic crowd of N.C. State students. Many lined up the day before for tickets and packed the humid Reynolds Coliseum in Raleigh to hear the President speak on Wednesday.

Obama told the students, many of whom had skipped class to hear the speech, to lobby Congress to pass the legislation, which he said would improve schools and infrastructure across the nation.

“Everything in it will be paid for,” Obama said. “Every single one of you can make this bill a reality.”

The Act would be funded primarily by taxes on the wealthy, which gained positive traction among the crowd on Wednesday.

The plan has already been met with opposition from Republicans unwilling to increase spending, but Obama is banking on support from House Speaker John Boehner and the public to get the legislation through.

“There are some Republicans who get it,” he said. “This is not the time for partisanship.”

He said many Republicans are reluctant to pass the bill because they’re unwilling to give him a “win” as the 2012 election approaches.

“Give me a win?” he asked. “Give me a break!”

He said the legislation would work to improve infrastructure and schools across the nation, an idea that was met with support from students in the audience.

“This is America,” he said. “I don’t know about you, but I don’t want our students going to class in broken-down schools.”

Obama is focusing his persuasive efforts on swing states, having spoken in Boehner’s home state of Ohio on Tuesday, where he urged the public to “pass this bill.”

In August, Obama led GOP presidential hopeful Mitt Romney by three points in the state, according to Public Policy Polling.

North Carolina went for Obama in 2008 by only about 14,000 votes. The state remains a major battleground for the 2012 election, when the Democrats will host their nominating convention in Charlotte.

In the middle of speaking, Obama was interupted by a student who yelled, “I love you Barack!” He laughed and replied, “I love you too,” before asking for help passing the bill.

Relive the speech by going through Tweets from the speech at @reesenow.