First Lady Michelle Obama attended BET’s annual “BLACK GIRLS ROCK!” awards ceremony in New Jersey Saturday, where she spoke directly to a crowd of young black men and women about the values of education.
During her speech, the First Lady offered a message of hope, resilience, and encouragement from both herself and her husband, President Obama.
“No matter who you are, no matter where you come from, you are beautiful,” said Obama. “I am so proud of you. My husband, your president, is so proud of you. We have so much hope and dreams for you.”
She continued: “I know there are voices that you are not good enough. Each of those doubts was like a test that I either shrink away from or rise to meet. And I decided to rise.”
According to Ebony, her appearance was a part of her “Reach Higher” initiative, which encourages young people to pursue a higher education.
BET reports “BLACK GIRLS ROCK!” is a 501(c)3 non-profit Youth empowerment and mentoring organization established to promote the arts for young women of color, as well as to encourage dialogue and analysis of the ways women of color are portrayed in the media.
The First Lady reportedly spent the evening dancing and, at one point, jumped on stage to the Sister Sledge hit “We Are Family.”
The event was co-hosted by Tracee Ellis Ross and Regina King and will air on BET April 5.