SOCIAL ANGST is more than just a blog, it is an invitation to aid in the building of wealth through the shared task of information distribution and discussion. It is a call to engage – engage in society, engage with your peers, engage in your political system, engage in spreading the wealth that is information, and engage in multiplying that wealth through discussion – so that collectively we may become more socially aware, more socially responsible, more socially vocal and ultimately more socially valuable.

Tuesday, November 03, 2009

Small Talk:
Michelle Obama's Mentorship Program

"...When I was starting my career at a big law firm, it was the first job I had out of law school. I went into a big, fancy law firm. And I really was excited. I thought I had made it, you know, because I’m making a salary that was more than both of my parents’ income combined, and I was, like, 24 years old. So I was, like, I made it.

But the interesting thing was that I worked in Chicago on the 47th floor of this beautiful building, and it looked directly south into my neighborhood. So everyday I’d go to the 47th floor in this big, fancy office with a secretary and I’d stare right at my neighborhood. Every day. It was sort of ironic because it reminded me that there are so many kids that but for the grace of God they could be here, they could be in my shoes. There were kids who were just as smart, just as funny, just as capable, but they missed an opportunity by a hair. You know, maybe they didn’t have the right parent. You know, maybe they just didn’t have that teacher who pushed them. You know, maybe it was money.

But it’s such a small set of possibilities that could make the difference between me and thousands of other kids. And I realized that when those opportunities don’t come, that gap just gets wider and wider and wider." - Michelle Obama

Monday, November 2 - Thirteen female high school students and 18 female White House staffers were in attendance for the launch of Mrs. Obama's East Wing mentorship program, an initiative aimed at matching local area female students with White House mentors. It is expected that about 20 female sophomore and junior high school students will be selected for the life skills oriented program. Student participants of the program have been selected by their principles as students who would benefit most from the opportunity.

The West Wing of the White House will follow suit with a mentorship program aimed at young men later this year. Mrs. Obama was visibly moved as she spoke to the crowd about the White House's commitment to the development of all children. Watch the clip below to see for yourself.

(At work and want to read the transcript? Jack & Jill Politics has it.)

Social Angst Commentary:

News of Michelle Obama's mentorship program made me smile. It is very "Talented Tenth" of her. Her humbling self portrait, in which she recognizes that her circumstances could have been very different without the mentors in her life, is deeply touching and (hopefully) equally inspiring. If the First Lady can manage to mentor - even with the Secret Service at her heels - all of us can make a little time to improve the lives of someone less fortunate than us.

Sources/More Information:
  1. Jack & Jill Politics: First Lady Initiates Mentor Program
  2. Politico: Michelle Obama Launches Mentoring Program
  3. Associated Press: First Lady launches White House mentoring program

Digg Google Bookmarks reddit Mixx StumbleUpon Technorati Yahoo! Buzz DesignFloat Delicious BlinkList Furl