Before you have a chance to discuss it further, the lights dim and the projector at the room's center activates. A hologram of a green-skinned humanoid towers above all of you. The program director is the only one who feels the need to turn up the magnification in this way, mostly because of his longstanding insecurity about how short he is in person. He clears his throat and begins his address.

"Greetings, future historians! By now many of you have either logged your intent to study a particular planet or intended to do so today. However, I regret to inform you that due to unforeseen circumstances, these selections have been invalidated."

The murmurs that had been rippling through the crowd quickly magnify into open grumbling and sporadic cries of dismay. The director continues on without concern. "This is likely a shock to most of you, and not a particularly pleasant one at that. But our...colleagues at Altair University have filed a legal injunction on the exclusive studying rights we have enjoyed in this sector for centuries."

The mention of Alt U elicits a chorus of boos; they are bitter rivals of your own institution, and have been for so long that no one really recalls how the conflict started in the first place.

The director steamrolls on without noticing this interruption either, which gives you a sneaking suspicion he has muted the feed from your room in order to avoid distractions. "The Altair legal team has successfully lobbied for their Terminal Societies program to have equal access across the disputed areas, which means many of your selected planets will no longer be available. Until we can determine a viable long-term solution, we will be assigning planets for study from the options which still remain available to us. Your individual assignment will be forwarded to your datapads. Everything else will remain the same, and each of you will be granted a flitship with the usual four-person crew to assist in your academic endeavors. Thank you for your patience, and good luck!"

The holo vanishes, the lights come up, and a cacophony of vibrations and obnoxious ringtones indicate that everyone has received their planet assignment simultaneously.