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Weekly Wrap Up: "Building This Country's Future"

Check out a snapshot of what happened this week at the White House.

Watch West Wing Week here.

NCAA Champions: On Tuesday, President Obama welcomed the NCAA Champion Louisville Cardinals to the White House. President Obama, an avid basketball fan, celebrated the team’s accomplishments both on and off the court – praising their cumulative 3.3 grade-point-average, the thousands of dollars they helped raise for charity, and their determination, despite physical obstacles, to win the men’s NCAA title.

Vice President and Dr. Biden in India: The Vice President and Dr. Biden traveled to India and Singapore, as part of their six-day trip – meeting with leaders and visiting schools and aid workers to discuss the important opportunity to strengthen our partnerships within the region. The Vice President also reaffirmed our commitment to rebalancing U.S. foreign policy toward the Asia-Pacific. When they arrived in New Delhi on Monday, they visited Mahatma Gandhi’s granddaughter and toured the Gandhi Smriti museum.

On Tuesday, the Vice President met with Indian Prime Minist Dr. Manmohan Singh, President Pranab Mukherjee, and Vice President Hamid Ansair where they discussed the relationship between the United States and India. Later, Vice President Biden spoke at a dinner hosted by Indian Vice President Hamid Ansari, where provided remarks about the importance partnership between the two countries. During the day, Dr. Biden visited the settlement of Kachhpura, where USAID Health and the Urban Poor Program has been stationed since 2011.

Speaking from the Bombay Stock Exchange on Wednesday, the Vice President spoke about moving both the U.S. and Indian economies forward – noting that American interests were very similar to Indian interests. Dr. Biden hosted a roundtable discussion to hear more about how groups are working to improve nutrition in India and visited The Dilaasa Crisis Intervention Department for Women, a center for female survivors of domestic violence.

Women at the Indian Institute of Technology met with Vice President Biden on Thursday for a roundtable discussion. The Vice President spoke about the importance of engaging women in science, technology, and engineering and explained what the U.S. is doing to promote STEM in the United States. Dr. Biden visited an all-girls school, where she taught a grammar lesson

National Council of La Raza: First Lady Michelle Obama spoke to more than 1,800 people at the National Council of La Raza’s Annual Conference on Tuesday, highlighting the importance of healthy eating, while keeping in mind the tradition and culture behind food. “While food might be love, the truth is that we are loving ourselves and our kids to death,” the First Lady said. “So we need to step up. We need to own this as a serious problem in our communities.” 

#ABetterBargin: Kicking off a series of speeches about the economy, President Obama boarded Air Force One on Wednesday and took off for the Midwest. His first stop was Knox College in Galesburg, Illinois – the place he made his first speech on the economy after being elected as U.S. Senator back in 2005; the President also traveled to the University of Central Missouri. At both events, the President discussed the economic progress we have made in the last five years, and encouraged Americans that we’re not done yet.

“As a country, we’ve recovered faster and gone further than most other advanced nations in the world.  With new American revolutions in energy and technology and manufacturing and health care, we're actually poised to reverse the forces that battered the middle class for so long, and start building an economy where everyone who works hard can get ahead.
But -- and here's the big “but” -- I’m here to tell you today that we're not there yet.  We all know that.  We're not there yet.  We've got more work to do.”

Instagram: While President Obama was preparing to head to Illinois, the Chief Official White House Photographer, Pete Souza, launched his own Instagram account – giving followers a behind-the-scenes look at the presidency. Follow his Instagram here, and then go follow the official Instagram accounts for the White House and First Lady Michelle Obama.

Meeting with the President of Vietnam: President Truong Sang of Vietnam visited the White House on Thursday for a bilateral meeting with President Obama in the Oval Office. The leaders discussed the Trans-Pacific Partnership and other ways the U.S. and Vietnam can work together to create jobs in both countries.

Talking Infrastructure: Reiterating his speeches on the economy in the Midwest the day before, the President visited Jacksonville, Florida on Thursday. The President said,

“We’ve got to help more manufacturers bring more jobs back to America.  We’ve got to keep creating good jobs in manufacturing.  We’ve got to create good jobs in wind and solar energy.  We’ve got to tap into this natural gas revolution that’s bringing energy costs down in this country, which means manufacturers now want to locate here because they’re thinking that we’ve got durable, reliable supplies of energy. We’ve got to create more jobs today doing what you’re doing right here at JAXPORT -- and that’s building this country’s future.”

Iftar Dinner: Muslim Americans were invited to the White House on Thursday night to celebrate an Iftar dinner. President Obama, who has hosted this event for five years thanked the community for their contributions to the United States.