Both Hillary and Condoleeza appeared at different days as part of the Commonwealth club event. Jean-Pierre Guittard made an announcement at the school during graduation letting all students know that CISL SF had bought free tickets for Hillary’s speech and for Condoleeza’s speech (enough for an entire class of about 8 people). Jean-Pierre wanted our students experience what it was like to attend speeches from very important people such as Hillary and Condoleeza and learn more about American politics and culture.

CISL SF student comments…

On October 18th, I attended the promotion event of Condoleeza Rice’s autobiography at the Mark Hopkins Hotel in San Francisco. She talked about her background which was written in her book. Though I didn’t know much about her before this event, I could know a little about her. She spoke about her family, her college life and her major at the university.

I’ve never attended this kind of event. My biggest surprise was the behavior of 5 protesters. In this event, they stood suddenly and shouted to her about every ten minutes. They were escorted out of the event by hotel security, but after the event they still stood outside of the hotel and repeated appeals. I recognized free speech in America by their behavior. This day was my first day at Converse. It was shocking and a good opportunity to observe a part of American culture. (By Jin Yoshikawa, Japan)

View Condolezza Rice slide show.


I’m so glade to have this opportunity to attend Ms Clinton speech at San Francisco’s Marriott hotel that Converse offered to me. In fact it’s the first time I attended a speech in USA I guess I’m lucky. Ms Clinton is popular and people like her , we were clapping for her a lot and she’s also so friendly she took photos with people. One week later the school also offered another opportunity to attend a Condoleezza rice speech. Both speeches were interesting I learned a lot about U.S. policy and the future of the USA . I have attended speeches a couple of times back home in Saudi Arabia but it was a different experience to be in the USA . Finally, I’d like to thank my school because they always offer a great opportunities for students! (Ahmed Alsomali, Saudi Arabia)

View video of Hillary Rodham Clinton’s San Francisco speech.