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Posted under: Education News

Michelle Obama Explains How She Overcame 'Negative Voices' In Order To Get Into Harvard Law School

Obama's professor knew she wasn't at her "best" and wrote her a second recommendation letter once she came correct.

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Michelle Obama, our Forever FLOTUS, is a queen of education. Highly known for her education advocacy, during her tenure as first lady, Mrs. Obama recently opened up about a time she was not exactly giving her best at school.

In an interview with Refinery 29, Obama takes us back to her time as an undergraduate at Princeton University. In her final year, Obama was hoping to apply to the acclaimed Harvard Law School, and when she approached her senior thesis adviser/professor for a letter of recommendation, he did not mince words.

"When I went to my thesis adviser for a letter of recommendation for law school, he did the best thing he possibly could have done: He gave a brutally honest response," Obama said.

"You know, you're a good student," Obama recalled her adviser told her, "But are you the best I've seen? I'm not sure."

"When I was writing my senior thesis in college, I had a great topic, and I was working pretty hard, but not as hard as I could have been," she said.

Her adviser ended up writing that letter of recommendation, but his response motivated the former first lady. She "made a decision to prove him wrong."

"For the next three months, I worked like you wouldn't believe on that thesis. I was in his office every day," Obama noted.

After that, she approached her adviser once again, and he asked her what she planned to do post-college. "Well, I'm applying to law school," Obama responded at the time. "You wrote me a letter of recommendation."

According to Obama, the professor then decided to write her another letter to send in addition to his first. She was accepted into Harvard Law School, and the rest is history.

"The lesson I learned from that is that as women and girls, we have to confront those negative voices — the ones in our head and the ones from people in our lives — telling us what we can't do," said Obama. 

Go, Forever FLOTUS, go! 

Photo: GIPHY
Photo: GIPHY

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Tonja Renée Stidhum is a writer/director made of sugar and spice and everything rice. She has the uncanny ability to make a Disney reference and a double entendre in the same sentence.
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