Palin, local connection
The Spokane TV stations
all took a stab at getting impressions of Palin from students and faculty at Univ of Idaho and Northern Idaho College, where she did her college work in the late '80s. None of the retired profs remembered her; apparently she was a quiet student who didn't get into a lot of extracurricular stuff.
The pres of NIC took the opportunity to make a good selling point: This shows that a student who starts at a community college can go all the way. You don't need to get into a prestigious university.
Though he was just doing his job, I think this does mark an important change. All of the Pres and VP choices in recent years, even those who started from poor backgrounds like Bill Clinton, played the prestige game, used Harvard or Yale as a stepping-stone to power.
Palin is the first major candidate in recent years who was neither an aristocrat from birth (Bush, Gore, McCain) nor a power-seeker from birth (Clinton, Obama).