Blog Posts Related to the Young Americans

  • White House Youth Summit: Making Sure People Have the Information They Need to #GetCovered

    This afternoon, youth leaders from across the country gathered here for our White House Youth Summit. The Summit was made of up 160 of this country's finest national and local leaders aged 18-35.  Joined by White House and Administration staff, these millennial participants discussed issues important to their generation -- especially spreading the word about the Affordable Care Act and organizing to get people enrolled in their respective communities. They also participated in a series of panels and breakout workshops with administration officials, stakeholder groups, and advocates. 

    To kick off the event, a very special guest dropped by to speak to the Youth Summit: President Obama -- who let young Americans know he needed their help.

    President Barack Obama delivers remarks at the White House Youth Summit on the Affordable Care Act (ACA) in the Eisenhower Executive Office Building South Court Auditorium, Dec. 4, 2013. (Official White House Photo by Pete Souza)

    President Barack Obama delivers remarks at the White House Youth Summit on the Affordable Care Act (ACA) in the Eisenhower Executive Office Building South Court Auditorium, Dec. 4, 2013. (Official White House Photo by Pete Souza)

    So I'm going to need you all to spread the word about how the Affordable Care Act really works, what its benefits are, what its protections are and, most importantly, how people can sign up. I know people call this law Obamacare. And that's okay -- because I do care. I care about you. I care about families. I care about Americans.

    But no matter how much I care, the truth is, is that for your friends and your family, the most important source of information is not going to be me, it's going to be you.  They are going to trust you.  If you're taking them on a website, walking them through it saying, look at the price you're able to get, look at the benefits you're able to get.  That's what's going to be making a difference. 

  • Calling All Young Americans: We Want to Hear from You!

    Throughout President Obama's career, he has been fighting for young people. Whether it is increasing access to higher education, or expanding health care coverage, giving young people a fair shot has been and always will be a priority.

    The President also believes in reaching out to youth across the country to make sure we’re hearing what they have to say, and helping them better understand the policies and programs that impact them. That’s why, on Wednesday, December 4th, we’re hosting over 150 leaders from across the country at the White House for a Youth Summit. The Summit will offer young people coming to the White House and across the country a chance to discuss the Affordable Care Act and others issues important to them.

    WH Youth Social

    Even if you can't be at the Summit in person, we still want to hear from you! 

    On Monday, December 2nd at 8:00 p.m. ET, join White House Senior Commnications Advisor Tara McGuinness, Kal Penn, and Young Invincibles for a Google+ Hangout. During this live video chat, we'll announce the winners of the "Healthy Young America Video Contest," preview the upcoming Youth Summit, and take questions about the Affordable Care Act and what It means for young Americans.  

    You can watch the Hangout live on the White House Google+ page.  Have a comments or questions? Ask them using the  hashtag #WHYouth on Twitter and on Google+ and we'll answer some of them during the live Hangout.

    Additionally, on December 4th, you can watch the Summit live starting at 2:00 pm ET on Throughout the day White House staff, HHS officials, and other special guests will be taking questions submitted on twitter using the hashtag #WHYouthSummit. 

    Kyle Lierman serves Youth Liaison in the White House Office of Public Engagement.

  • West Wing Week 9/20/13 or, "Every Moment of Every Day"

    This week, the President responded to the shootings at the Navy Yard in DC, invited small business owners to the White House as he spoke on the 5 year anniversary of the financial crisis, addressed  the Business Roundtable and the Export Council, sat down for interviews with ABC & Telemundo, welcomed the Amir of Kuwait, newly appointed Foreign Ambassadors, and Youth of the Year winners, and the First Lady spoke on marketing healthier food to children.

  • Marking Suicide Prevention Month

    In recognition of Suicide Prevention Month, First Lady Michelle Obama and Dr. Jill Biden have contributed to the Huffington Post “Invisible Casualties” series -- a special series that shines the spotlight on military suicides and prevention.

    Joining Forces is committed to enhancing the well-being and psychological health of our military service members, families, and veterans. Thus far, Joining Forces has engaged mental health professional associations to train thousands of health care providers to recognize the unseen wounds of war, promote research, and build public awareness of military wellness issues.

    Joining Forces wants every military service member, veteran, and family to know that asking for help is not a sign a weakness and they do not have to face these challenges alone.  As Americans, it is our duty to take care of those who have sacrificed so much for our country.

    “Whether you’re a friend, a neighbor, or a family member, you can help support these heroes by encouraging them and their families to seek help if they need it,” explained Dr. Biden.

    If you or someone you know is seeking assistance, The Military Crisis Line is there to help. For support, call 1-800-273-8255 (Press 1), text 838255 or chat online at This service is free, confidential, and available 24/7 to all military service members, veterans, family members, and friends.

    Colonel Rich Morales is Executive Director of Joining Forces

  • Helping More STEM Students get College-Ready

    Ed. note: This is cross posted from the official blog of the Office of Science and Technology Policy. Read the original post

    In his remarks last week on college affordability at the New York State University of Buffalo, President Obama emphasized that “higher education is still the best ticket to upward mobility in America.”

    Indeed, more and more well-paying jobs—especially those in the science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) fields—require education or training after high school. STEM fields are some of the fastest growing sectors of the American economy and they are important to the health and longevity of our Nation’s people, economy, and environment.

    But a recent report shows that today, less than half of high school graduates in the United States are prepared for college-level math courses, and under a third are ready for college-level science.  Educating the next generation of scientists, engineers, inventors, and entrepreneurs is critical to the continued leadership of United States. We need to get America’s STEM students college-ready.

    From the beginning of his Administration, President Obama has called for all hands on deck to improve STEM education in America. Under the President’s Educate to Innovate Campaign the Administration has formed public-private partnerships to inspire students in STEM fields and to provide the tools for students to achieve success. 

    The National Math and Science Initiative (NMSI) is one such partner working to answer the President’s call by improving student engagement and success in challenging high-school math and science courses. Today, NMSI announced that for the fifth year running, students enrolled in its Advanced Placement (AP) program earned significantly higher scores on AP exams compared to the national average. By providing teachers with specialized training, mentorship, and classroom resources, increased class time, and incentives for teachers, students, and administrators to work to achieve ambitious goals, NMSI’s AP program has on average increased by 144% the number of students achieving qualifying scores on AP math, science, and English exams in schools adopting the program. 

    The program has also succeeded in narrowing the achievement gap for women and minorities traditionally underrepresented in STEM fields, nearly doubling the number of girls achieving qualifying scores on math and science AP exams and nearly tripling the number of African American students doing the same.  And this matters because students earning qualifying scores on AP exams are three times more likely to earn a college degree. 

    And in response to the First Lady’s call to support the Nation’s service members through  her Joining Forces Initiative, NMSI has partnered with OSTP to establish the Initiative for Military Families, which has brought NMSI’s AP program to public schools with large populations of military kids.  That growing initiative is already in place at 70 military-serving schools across America. 

    Programs like this one help students succeed in courses that will prepare them for college and earn valuable college credit—setting them on the path to successfully earn a college degree. 

    As August winds down and a new school year begins, OSTP wishes continued success to students and teachers across the country and looks forward to building more partnerships to ensure that student interest and achievement in STEM fields only continues to grow.  

    Arun Seraphin is Principal Assistant Director for National Security and International Affairs at OSTP

    Danielle Carnival is a Senior Policy Advisor at OSTP