On June 3rd, Michelle Obama gave her last commencement address as first lady at CUNY, at City College of New York. Mrs. Obama’s theme of strength in diversity threaded throughout her powerful address. She shared her personal experiences to bring home the point that hard work was her door to opportunity. The first lady encouraged graduates to continue to build on the resilience they learned as City College students. She spoke of how situations can initially appear as obstacles but then turn into great motivators.
Mrs. Obama’s speech was also political. She spoke of the current political climate by saying, “they act as if name-calling is an acceptable substitute for thoughtful debate, as if anger and intolerance should be our default state rather than the optimism and openness that have always been the engine of our progress.” The first lady went on to add, “here in America, we don’t give in to our fears. We don’t build up walls to keep people out because we know that our greatness has always depended on contributions from people who were born elsewhere but sought out this country and made it their home.”
Michelle Obama’s address has words for everyone. Take a listen and hear what encourages you forward.