UCSD Graduate Student Strikes It Big in California Lotto

July 17, 2008
Brittany Armellino

UCSD graduate student, Flannery O’Connor, won $75 million in the California Super Lottery on July 11, 2008. O’Connor, 28, received the money in a lump sum after $50,000 in taxes were deducted. The winning ticket was purchased at a 7-Eleven in Del Mar, Calif. on July 7, 2008. Her lucky numbers were 03-07-17-25-57.

O’Connor discovered she won the lottery while watching television around 8 p.m. on July 11. “I think I checked that ticket about twenty-five times,” she said. Flannery believes winning the lottery was a fluke because her brother, who was in town at the time, suggested she played and purchased her ticket.

At today’s UCSD press conference, O’Connor announced that she plans to use the money to start a rock & roll camp for girls. The camp will be near Bloomington, Ind., where she attended Indiana University (IU). She currently lives in Pacific Beach, Calif. and is studying performance in musical subcultures at UCSD. Next year, she plans to leave San Diego and return to Bloomington where she will continue to conduct research in her field. Once in Bloomington, O’Connor will finally have the chance to open her camp and become its director.

O’Connor has been intrigued by rock & roll music since her undergraduate studies. While at IU, she lived in a dorm with other musicians. When asked to join their band, Hijla, she agreed. Since then, she has been in four or five bands and currently plays in the band Belligerent Sunshine. She is opening the camp because she feels that young girls deserve the opportunity to follow their passion and experience rock & roll music firsthand. O’Connor claims, “I get to see the change I want to see in this world.”

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