May 4th, 2009
09:00 PM ET
12 years ago

First lady highlights learning, service for Cinco de Mayo

WASHINGTON (CNN) - First lady Michelle Obama turned her eyes to health and education during a trip Monday to a District of Columbia school.

Celebrating Cinco de Mayo one day early, she spoke about education and told the crowd to send "good thoughts" to those in Mexico who have been sickened with swine flu in recent weeks.

"At the time that we're celebrating Mexican culture and heritage, it is so important for us to think about some of the challenges that the folks in Mexico are facing right now," she told the crowd of about 200 students, faculty and guests from two public charter schools, Latin American Montessori Bilingual and Next Step.

She also highlighted the D.C. Scholars program, which grants White House internships to students from Washington-area public schools and encourages them to take advantage of their proximity to the nation's politics by engaging in public service.

Obama took several questions from the students, joking, "Make them very easy questions, because it's very nerve-wracking up here."

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