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It’s no secret that First Lady Michelle Obama is extremely passionate about higher education, and this month she explains more to ESSENCE Editor-in-Chief Vanessa K. Bush.

A major ingredient in the recipe for success has to do with nurturing resilience in our children, Michelle explained.

“I know I tell my kids all the time that they shouldn’t shy away from difficult things, because that is the point at which you are really growing. It’s not just about grades or test scores. Today our kids may shy away from applying to college if they think they don’t have the right grade or test score. But the truth is that the kids who succeed and go on to be successful professionals are the ones who know how to work hard,” says Mrs. Obama.

However in order to even get that far, the First Lady explains that children have to see education as an opportunity and then take advantage of it.

“We cannot waste the opportunity that we have here in America, especially as African-Americans. Our ancestors fought and bled and died so that we could go to school,” she says. “And I still think about that.”

This is a message that Michelle has certainly drilled into the minds of daughters Sasha and Malia.

 “We talk about responsibility and accountability, about making sure that they’re not wasting the opportunities they’re given. We make sure they know how lucky they are and that, because of that, they have an obligation to have their acts together and to take their education very seriously.”

To find out more about Michelle Obama’s education initiative and to find out how you can fund your child’s future, be sure to pick up a copy of the August 2014 issue of ESSENCE, hitting stands July 4.

PHOTO CREDIT & SOURCE: ESSENCE Magazine

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