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The Long Emotional Journey to Drake’s Sneaky Drake University Visit


Drake—the Canadian wunderkind and platinum-selling rapper—was on tour with a stop in Des Moines, Iowa on Tuesday. But he wasn’t the only Drake in town. Des Moines is also home to a perhaps lesser-known Drake: Drake University, founded in 1881. Since 2009, students have been campaigning to get Drake to visit. And last night, their dream became a reality… sort of.

Students first started a “bring Drake to Drake” campaign on social media, and the hype increased this spring, when school administrators noted that Drizzy had listed their city as a stop on his Summer Sixteen tour. On Monday, they tagged him in an Instagram, and the rapper himself posted a comment within ten minutes, hinting he might be down to meet up. “I’mma pull up on ya,” he wrote, as the post went viral. The students waited. They gathered in the central quad. And then they dispersed, dream deferred.

“We’re embracing the silliness,” said Drake University’s digital media strategist Niki Smith told TIME. They hoped that Drake’s audience would take note of the university, too.

In a statement this summer, the university wrote “should he wish to take us up on our offer (because YOLO)… We’ll be waiting for that hotline to bling!”

A student group calling themselves “Drake Social” sent him a plea last month:

And even the student body president sought out the rapper with her own meme.

More students made a video…

… and then the university’s president, Marty Martin, got in on the action.

The rapper was performing at a venue just a few minutes from campus, according to school officials.

This could be you tomorrow @champagnepapi. With our mums currently in bloom, that's a frame-worthy photo. #BringDraketoDrake

A photo posted by Drake University (@drakeuniversity) on

The students gathered, hopes high that they’d get to see the 6 God himself.

But it wasn’t until the middle of the night that Drizzy made his incognito stop-by.


A photo posted by champagnepapi (@champagnepapi) on

They’ve loved, and unfortunately this time around, they’ve lost. But he still repped the school, wearing one of their varsity jackets onstage — and on his way back to his jet. Playing with their hearts.


A photo posted by champagnepapi (@champagnepapi) on


A photo posted by champagnepapi (@champagnepapi) on

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