Michelle Obama Surprises Spelman Students Who Studied 'Becoming'

May 11, 2019

Former first lady Michelle Obama made a surprise visit to Spelman College ahead of a book tour event in Atlanta for her autobiography, "Becoming."

Obama met with a group of students from Spelman and Morehouse Colleges who studied the book this semester. Professor Marilyn Davis used it as the foundational text for the honors political science course, Black Women: Developing Public Leadership Skills.  

During the round table discussion on Mother’s Day weekend, Obama and the students talked about topics including overcoming imposter syndrome and breaking barriers in education and professional life. She shared how she managed her educational and professional struggles with the students.

While not her official platform during her time in the White House, Obama has kept education at the center of her focus and work before, during and after her years in Washington, D.C.

The Princeton University and Harvard Law graduate launched the Reach Higher initiative, which encourages students to continue their education past high school. That can mean attending a four-year college or university, a community college or professional training programs. 

Former First Lady Michelle Obama shares stories with students from Spelman and Morehouse who studied her autobiography during the semester.
Credit Robert Jimison / GPB

The Saturday visit on campus was not Obama's first visit to Spelman. The first-generation college graduate spoke at Spelman’s commencement in 2011 and recently co-chaired a voting event ahead of the 2018 midterm elections.

"Becoming" sold 2 million copies in North America within 15 days of its 2018 release. Obama will be interviewed at the sold out Atlanta event by CBS This Morning Anchor Gayle King.