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The White House
Office of the First Lady
For Immediate Release

Remarks by the First Lady at Roundtable Discussion with High School Students

Brown V. Board of Education Historical Site

Topeka, Kansas

4:22 P.M. CDT

MRS. OBAMA:  I thought it would be really cool to talk to – students who were here.  That’s why we got to –- with all of you.

One of the –- a new initiative that I started just this past month is called Reach Higher.  And one of the things that I’m trying to do to support the President’s North Star goal is to make sure that the United States has the most educated workforce in the world once again –- is to really try to reach out to young people and stress the importance of finishing high school and getting an education beyond high school, whether that’s professional training, four-year college, two-year community college.  It’s just going to be essential for you guys to succeed in an ever-globalizing economy, to have that kind of education.

And I hear that you guys are already way into that.  You’re good.  You’re focused, right?

MS. NILSEN:  Going to college.

MRS. OBAMA:  That’s a good thing.  But I’m really –- what helps me in these initiatives is to really hear from students like you to find out what are your hopes, how do you think about college, what do you think about life there –- and so forth.  What are some of the challenges that you face?  What are some of the questions you have of somebody like me who might be able to do something about something, or talk to a guy that could maybe do something about something?

So I really just want to hear from you.  See what’s on your minds, what’s working for you, what are you afraid of, what are some of the concerns.


END                  4:24 P.M. CDT