SHAKE hands with Sam Moyle and Stuart Kinsella and you're one degree of separation from United States President Barack Obama.

The two University of Queensland students, from Toowoomba and Goondiwindi respectively, were in disbelief after they shook the leader's hand ahead of the G20 Leaders' Summit in Brisbane.

"A couple of us got really lucky. Mine was reaching over a few people," Mr Moyle, 20, said.

"It's a story for the grandchildren … being able to say you were in the same room as the first African American president."

University of Queensland students Dominic Jorgensen, from Rockhampton, Stuart Kinsella, from Goondiwindi, Sam Moyle, from Toowoomba, and Charl Van Den Berg, from Mackay, at United States President Barack Obama's speech at University of Queensland ahead of the G20 Leaders' Summit. Photo Rae Wilson / Newsdesk
University of Queensland students Dominic Jorgensen, from Rockhampton, Stuart Kinsella, from Goondiwindi, Sam Moyle, from Toowoomba, and Charl Van Den Berg, from Mackay, at United States President Barack Obama's speech at University of Queensland ahead of the G20 Leaders' Summit. Photo Rae Wilson / Newsdesk Rae Wilson

Mr Moyle, who is studying physiotherapy, said Mr Obama had the audience captivated from his first sentence during a speech at his university on Saturday.

"He just had this euphoria about him when he came into the room," he said.

"He's really good with people, he worked the room magnificently.

"He's a man making a difference.

"There's no doubt he's a very intelligent man but I think the level he spoke that was quite suitable to the audience."

UQ student Sam Moyle, from Toowoomba, gets a selfie with United States President Barack Obama in the background after a speech at University of Queensland ahead of the G20 Leaders' Summit. Photo: contributed.
UQ student Sam Moyle, from Toowoomba, gets a selfie with United States President Barack Obama in the background after a speech at University of Queensland ahead of the G20 Leaders' Summit. Photo: contributed.

Mr Kinsella, 21, said he was so excited about hearing from "such an influential person" on global issues but he also loved the humour splashed throughout the speech.

He said the US leader made an impression on him when he spoke about young people becoming "the leaders of tomorrow".

"He knows how to get stuff done," he said.

"It was great when he was talking about how we need to make sure things like the Great Barrier Reef are kept in pristine condition for generations to come. How we need to step up and our leaders need to get their heads out of the sand and take a look at what's actually out there.

"He knew what he was talking about - he had a firm stance on Ukraine, the MH17 flight and calling Tony Abbott on climate change.

"I don't know if we talk about (climate change) day to day but I've worked out west where you get 46-degree heats normally; you don't want it to go up."

Mr Kinsella, who was able to snap selfies with a blurry President behind, said he was stoked he got so close he could shake hands.

"You'd never think it would happen," he said. - APN NEWSDESK

Griffith University students Megan Currey, from Mackay, and Jessica Lawrie, from Rockhampton, at United States President Barack Obama's speech at University of Queensland ahead of the G20 Leaders' Summit. Photo Rae Wilson / Newsdesk
Griffith University students Megan Currey, from Mackay, and Jessica Lawrie, from Rockhampton, at United States President Barack Obama's speech at University of Queensland ahead of the G20 Leaders' Summit. Photo Rae Wilson / Newsdesk Rae Wilson

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