From Sunlen Miller: The first lady has issued a challenge to a DC University. Finish 100,000 hours of community service this year, and she’ll speak at graduation. Michelle Obama has promised The George Washington University in downtown Washington, DC that she will give the commencement address at their graduation in May if 100,000 hours of community service are completed by the student body this school year. “My challenge to the GW community is to make service a daily part of their lives,” Mrs. Obama said in a press release sent out by GW. The challenge was spurred by a letter that GW Student Association President Julie Bindelglass and Student Association Executive Vice President Jason Lifton wrote to the Michelle Obama in June. They invited Mrs. Obama to participate in a Freshman Day of Service on campus. Mrs. Obama couldn’t attend, so intend issued her promise.
The First Lady’s office says she wanted to recognize the good work the GW community is already doing while challenging them to do even more. Last year, GW students logged about 65,000 total hours. The GW Office of Community Service, in hopes of reaching lucky number 100,000, will be tracking the volunteer hour’s students log and will periodically report the tally to the first lady. “I am grateful to the first lady for this inspiring challenge, and I know that our entire GW community – students, faculty and staff – will rise to meet that challenge and we will be with the first lady, on the Mall this coming May,” GW’s President Steven Knapp said today as he announced the news during a service event on the university’s campus this afternoon. GW Student Association President Julie Bindelglass got a jump on her volunteer hours. Today as the Obamas volunteered for the National Day of Service, Julie was by the first lady’s side. GW’s commencement ceremonies are scheduled for Sunday May 16th, 2010 on the National Mall. The first lady's office says the Mrs. Obama is holding that that date on her calendar. -Sunlen Miller