First Lady Michelle Obama invoked the example of the "Greensboro Four" in her commencement address to North Carolina A&T University's class of 2012. More than half a century ago, four A&T students started the movement that led to desegregation at lunch counters across the country, and Mrs Obama said this shows what can happen when someone decides to "wake up and change the situation." The First Lady challenged the students to follow their lead:
As graduates of this proud university, as young people like those who always stoked the fires of progress, our country is counting on all of you to step forward and help us with the work that remains. We need you.
Mrs Obama also challeged each member of the graduating class to think about what’s important, and ask themselves three questions:
- Who are you going to be?
- What’s going on in the world around me? and
- How can I help?