Michelle Obama Thanks Her High School for Naming Building After Her

REMKO DE WAAL/AFP/Getty Images
REMKO DE WAAL/AFP/Getty Images

Former First Lady Michelle Obama thanked her former Chicago high school after it named a multi-million dollar athletic complex on campus in her honor.

Whitney Young Magnet High School dedicated the $4.3 million building in Obama’s name—the Michelle Obama Athletic Complex— on Monday after one year of construction, NBC 5 Chicago reported.

Obama, who graduated in the class of 1981, presented a video message for the school’s current students.

“Whitney Young has played such a foundational role in my life,” Obama said. “It’s where I first started to branch outside my neighborhood and see the possibilities that lay right in front of me.”

The recently constructed complex contains football, soccer, and lacrosse fields, a running track, baseball and softball fields, batting cages, and bleachers for spectators.

Before the complex was completed, students would have to run on city streets or take the train to practice facilities.

The naming ceremony comes despite the fact Obama never played a sport during her time at the school. The former first lady, however, used her time in the White House to promote healthy eating and fitness.

Obama said the facility would be open to local Chicagoans as well as students so it could be used as an open space.

“This is a facility for everybody,” she said. “For athletes and non-athletes. For weekend warriors and fitness fanatics. For every student, every parent, every community member.”

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