The White House Blog: The First Lady

  • The First Lady's Travel Journal: Why I'm Passionate About Education

    Note: This post is part of a series authored by First Lady Michelle Obama to share her visit to China with young people in the U.S. You can read all of the First Lady's posts at WhiteHouse.gov/First-Lady-China-Trip.

     

    First Lady Michelle Obama at an Education Roundtable in Beijing

    First Lady Michelle Obama participates in a roundtable discussion with educators, parents and students at the US Embassy in Beijing, China. March 23, 2014. (by Amanda Lucidon)

    Today, I met with a group of educators, parents and students who care deeply about education in China. This is an issue of great importance to me as First Lady -- that's why I've been working to inspire young people in America to pursue their education beyond high school, whether that's at a two-year college, a four-year college, or through an apprenticeship or another kind of job training. 

    I'm not just passionate about education in my role as First Lady -- this issue is also very personal for me. Growing up, my family didn't have much money, and my parents never attended college. However, like so many parents here in China who care so deeply about educating their kids, my parents were determined to send me and my brother to college. I studied as hard as I could, and with the help of scholarships and student loans, I was able to attend Princeton University and Harvard Law School. The degrees I got from those schools allowed me to get a job as a lawyer at a big law firm, and then as an executive at a hospital, and then as the director of a program that prepared young people for careers in public service.


  • The First Lady's Travel Journal: Thanking U.S. Embassy Staff and Families in Beijing

    Note: This post is part of a series authored by First Lady Michelle Obama to share her visit to China with young people in the U.S. You can read all of the First Lady's posts at WhiteHouse.gov/First-Lady-China-Trip.

    The First Lady at the US Embassy in Beijing

    First Lady Michelle Obama greets guests along the rope line after delivering remarks at the Embassy in Beijing, China. March 22, 2014. (Official White House Photo by Amanda Lucidon)

    This evening, I dropped by the U.S. Embassy in Beijing.  It’s a beautiful complex of light-filled buildings, fountains and trees just outside 3rd Ring Road, one of Beijing’s busiest streets.

    Hundreds of people report for work here every day.  Many are Americans – Foreign Service officers, civil servants, and others in Beijing on their latest "tour."  Most tours last two or three years.  After that, these folks head to their next assignment somewhere else around the world.  Usually their families go with them, unless they’re going to a country that’s viewed as dangerous or unstable.  In those cases, families stay home, which as you can imagine can be tough on everyone.

    Other employees are what we call "locally employed staff" – staff members who are from the country where the embassy is located.  In Beijing, locally employed staff do everything from driving embassy vehicles to helping run our local arts and education programs to organizing visits for American officials.  At all our embassies, our locally employed staff members have invaluable knowledge about the people, language and culture.


  • The First Lady's Travel Journal: Meeting with American and Chinese Students at Peking University

    Note: This post is part of a series authored by First Lady Michelle Obama to share her visit to China with young people in the U.S. You can read all of the First Lady's posts at WhiteHouse.gov/First-Lady-China-Trip.


  • West Wing Week 3/21/14 or, “24 Soldiers”

     

    This week, the President celebrated St. Patrick's day alongside the Prime Minister of Ireland, continued to work toward a diplomatic resolution to the conflict in Ukraine, hosted Palestinian President Abbas, awarded 24 Medals of Honor, and traveled to Florida to speak on the importance of supporting working families.


  • Weekly Wrap Up: FLOTUS in China, March Madness, and More

    This week, the President filled out his NCAA tournament brackets and awarded the Medal of Honor to 24 veterans. The First Lady departed for China and visited the Forbidden City. See what else you missed in this week's weekly wrap up.


    POTUS Fills Out His Brackets

    For the sixth straight year, the President filled out his brackets for the NCAA men’s and women’s basketball tournaments. On the men’s side, he has Louisville, Michigan State, Florida, and Arizona headed to the Final Four, with the Spartans winning it all.

    Too bad the President also had Duke going all the way to the Elite Eight.


  • The First Lady's Travel Journal: Touring the Forbidden City

    Note: This post is part of a series authored by First Lady Michelle Obama to share her visit to China with young people in the U.S. You can read all of the First Lady's posts at WhiteHouse.gov/First-Lady-China-Trip.


  • The First Lady's Travel Journal: Our Official Visit to China Begins

    Note: This post is part of a series authored by First Lady Michelle Obama to share her visit to China with young people in the U.S. You can read all of the First Lady's posts at WhiteHouse.gov/First-Lady-China-Trip.

    Watch on YouTube


  • Participate in the First Lady’s China Trip from Anywhere

    Note: Don’t miss a moment of the trip. Sign up to get the First Lady’s blog posts, videos of events and photos delivered right to your inbox. 

    This week, First Lady Michelle Obama will travel to China for an official visit – and she’s inviting young people across America to join her. During her trip, Mrs. Obama will meet with students at the Stanford Center at Peking University, Beijing Normal School and Chengdu No. 7 High School to discuss the power and importance of education, both in her own life and in the lives of young people in both countries. She'll also visit historical and cultural sites, from the Great Wall to the Terra Cotta Warriors, and will be sharing it all with you!

    Here’s how people in the U.S. -- and around the world -- can participate and follow along:

    • The First Lady's travel journal: Each day, the First Lady will post a daily travel blog, complete with videos and photos (and you can sign up to get the latest entries delivered to your inbox).
    • Podcast series: In an audio series, First Lady Michelle Obama will share some of the interesting facts about Chinese history and culture as she experiences it.
    • Ask the First Lady: In the weeks leading up to the trip, hundreds of young people submitted questions for the First Lady. During the visit, Mrs. Obama will record video responses and engage directly with young people on social media. Use the hashtag #FLOTUSinChina to discuss the trip and ask questions on Twitter or Instagram.
    • Follow on social media: You can follow along through the First Lady’s Twitter and Instagram accounts.


  • The First Lady Encourages Military Families to Get Covered

    Ed. note: This is cross-posted on the White House Blog. See the original post here.

    Today, as part of the Department of Veterans Affairs Google+ Hangout to provide uninsured veterans, their family members, caregivers, and advocates information about health insurance options available under the Affordable Care Act, First Lady Michelle Obama encouraged uninsured veterans who are not eligible for coverage by the VA and their families to sign up for health care in advance of the March 31 deadline.

    "The deadline for signing up is March 31st. So talk to your friends, your family, your neighbors … send them to the website right now, and keep on them until they sign up. Because all Americans deserve the security of knowing that you’ll have health care when you need it – especially families like yours who have already given so much to this country," said the First Lady.

    The Affordable Care Act helps honor our commitment to veterans by strengthening affordable health care options for their families. "The last thing our veteran families need is the stress of worrying that one accident or illness could mean losing everything you’ve worked so hard for," said the First Lady. "But thanks to the Affordable Care Act, that weight is being lifted."

    If you don't already have health insurance, as of today, there are just 17 days left to enroll in health care coverage at HealthCare.gov before open enrollment ends on March 31. At HealthCare.gov you can compare your options based on price, benefits, quality, and other features, and enroll in a plan that fits your needs and your budget.

    Kasie Coccaro is Associate Director of Online Outreach for the White House Office of Digital Strategy.


  • The First Lady Encourages Military Families to Get Covered

    Today, as part of the Department of Veterans Affairs Google+ Hangout to provide uninsured veterans, their family members, caregivers, and advocates information about health insurance options available under the Affordable Care Act, First Lady Michelle Obama encouraged uninsured veterans who are not eligible for coverage by the VA and their families to sign up for health care in advance of the March 31 deadline.

    "The deadline for signing up is March 31st. So talk to your friends, your family, your neighbors … send them to the website right now, and keep on them until they sign up. Because all Americans deserve the security of knowing that you’ll have health care when you need it – especially families like yours who have already given so much to this country," said the First Lady.

    The Affordable Care Act helps honor our commitment to veterans by strengthening affordable health care options for their families. "The last thing our veteran families need is the stress of worrying that one accident or illness could mean losing everything you’ve worked so hard for," said the First Lady. "But thanks to the Affordable Care Act, that weight is being lifted."

    If you don't already have health insurance, as of today, there are just 17 days left to enroll in health care coverage at HealthCare.gov before open enrollment ends on March 31. At HealthCare.gov you can compare your options based on price, benefits, quality, and other features, and enroll in a plan that fits your needs and your budget.