Michelle Obama Making Debut as Graduation Speaker

By: Garance Burke AP Email
By: Garance Burke AP Email

MERCED, Calif. (AP) - Jubilant graduates at a rural California university are awaiting first lady Michelle Obama's debut as a commencement speaker.

She is giving the address Saturday afternoon to the first full senior class at the University of California, Merced. It is the newest and smallest school in the state's public system of universities.

Only four years ago there were more cows in the surrounding
pastures than there were academic buildings in Merced, which is
about 140 miles southeast of San Francisco. Yosemite National Park
is about 90 miles to the northeast.

Students bombarded the first lady's office with letters, e-mails and even hundreds of Valentine's cards in a nonstop campaign to get her to speak at graduation. And it worked.

She also plans to speak on June 3 to graduates of a charter school in Washington, D.C.

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