March 30, 2011
First Lady Michelle Obama to Host Mentoring Events with Renowned Women in Celebration of Women's History Month
March 30, 2011
Students at three DCPS high schools will learn valuable lessons Wednesday about life from 20 prominent women mentors including a Pulitzer Prize winner, astronauts, actors, CEOs and the first lady of the United States.
First lady Michelle Obama will kick-off the afternoon of mentoring activities at Ballou Senior High School in Southeast as part of an annual Women’s History Month celebration. At Ballou, Mrs. Obama will meet with a group of students to share her experiences and encourage them to strive for excellence while pursuing their career goals.
At the same time, a group of accomplished women representing a variety of careers will visit Woodson and Eastern senior high schools to serve as mentors and share their experiences in brief presentations and question-and-answer sessions with students (see list below).
The day’s events will culminate with a dinner and program in the East Room of the White House that will include 120 students from local schools as well as additional mentors from in and outside of government.
“This is a wonderful learning opportunity for our students,” said DCPS Acting Chancellor Kaya Henderson. “These women have worked hard, under difficult circumstances in the pursuit of their dreams and serve as inspiration for DC youths who have hopes, dreams and aspirations of their own.”
The first lady has spoken frequently about the importance of encouraging and inspiring young people to achieve their full potential. In March 2009, she hosted a similar mentoring event with guest mentors and local high school students. That was followed by others in Denver and Detroit.
Mrs. Obama also started a White House leadership and mentoring initiative in November 2009 that paired White House staff as mentors with students at several local high schools. The program includes 20 young women who participate in monthly activities, such as college and career preparation.
LIST OF MENTORS AT DC PUBLIC SCHOOLS
Ballou Senior High School: First lady Michelle Obama
Eastern Senior High School: Actor Hilary Swank; playwright and professor Anna Deveare Smith; Grammy Award-winning violinist Miri Ben-Ari; Olympic gold medalist and WNBA player Lisa Leslie.
Woodson Senior High School: Actor Rashida Jones; Gen. Dana Born; Olympic gold medalist Dominique Dawes; Lifetime Networks Senior Vice President of Series Programming and Development Nina Lederman.