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Barack & Michelle After Dark™: Michelle Visits Howard. Wounded Warrior Riders Visit Barack’s House. The West Wing Week.


 

By Jueseppi B.

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First Lady Michelle Obama And Bow Wow Spotted At Howard University

 

On Thursday, first lady Michelle Obama and rapper-slash-actor Bow Wow joined 37 students from Chicago public high schools for a tour of Howard University, our colleague Krissah Thompson reports. According to the first lady’s office, Obama specifically requested Bow Wow for the event, an annual college visit called “Escape to the Mecca” — a nod to the university’s nickname “the mecca.”

“This isn’t bad,” Obama said as she stepped inside a dorm room in Frazier Hall where one enterprising student had the perfect product placement on her desk: a portfolio and résumé. During the sneak peek, Obama encouraged the visiting students to step in and look around too. “You might be living here. I’m just visiting,” she said.

 

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From NBC 5 Chicago:

 

First Lady Welcomes Chicago Public School Students on College Visit 

 

CPS officials said 37 students were on the campus visit from 18 area schools

 

By Alexandria Fisher

First Lady Michelle Obama and rapper Bow Wow welcomed dozens of Chicago high schoolers to Howard University in Washington Thursday afternoon.

 

First lady Michelle Obama and Bow Wow, co-host of the television show “106 & Park,” along with high school students from Chicago, tour the Howard University dorms. (Marvin Joseph/The Washington Post)

First lady Michelle Obama and Bow Wow, co-host of the television show “106 & Park,” along with high school students from Chicago, tour the Howard University dorms. (Marvin Joseph/The Washington Post)

 

The First Lady joined the students on their college visit to promote the President’s “North Star” initiative, which aims to bring America’s proportion of college graduates back to the highest in the world by 2020.

 

Obama, a Princeton University and Harvard Law alum, toured dorm rooms and posed for a group photo with the juniors and seniors from Chicago Public high schools as Howard students shouted from dorm room windows.

 

Students cheer from their dorm room windows as they watch First Lady Michelle Obama take a tour of Howard University

Students cheer from their dorm room windows as they watch First Lady Michelle Obama take a tour of Howard University

 

Donning a maroon pant suit and black flats the First Lady showed her school spirit by waving a “Howard hand” and speaking to the students from a campus food court.

 

Bow Wow, formerly L’il Bow Wow, joined the First Lady Thursday to help moderate the students’ discussion.

 

First Lady Michelle Obama smiles at rapper Bow Wow at Howard University. The First Lady joined juniors and seniors from Chicago public high schools on the first day of their four-day visit to Howard University, as part of a program to immerse talented high school students in a college campus environment.

First Lady Michelle Obama smiles at rapper Bow Wow at Howard University. The First Lady joined juniors and seniors from Chicago public high schools on the first day of their four-day visit to Howard University, as part of a program to immerse talented high school students in a college campus environment.

 

“I’m very proud of you guys,” Bow Wow said, after starting off by shouting out Chicago neighborhoods.

 

Obama pumped her fist when he said “South Side.”

 

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The 27-year-old co-host of BET’s “106 & Park,” a weekday show on which the First Lady has appeared, didn’t attend college and instead pursued an entertainment career, according to his manager Bart Waters.

 

The First Lady commended Bow Wow, a child rapping prodigy, for his support for education and said she was “very proud of this young man.”

 

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She then went on to encourage the students to go to college or pursue other higher education.

 

“While there’s a lot of work that needs to be done on our end,” she said, referring to government, philanthropy and other resources, “you don’t have time to wait for everybody to fix the system.”

 

CPS officials said 37 students were on the campus visit from 18 area schools.

 

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“This has been the most phenomenal day of my life,” Pamela Mondane, 17, told Obama.

 

The senior at Whitney Young, Obama’s alma mater, said she intended to enroll at Howard University later this year.

 

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First lady Michelle Obama and Bow Wow, co-host of the television show “106 & Park,” along with high school students from Chicago, tour the Howard University dorms. (Marvin Joseph/The Washington Post)

First lady Michelle Obama and Bow Wow, co-host of the television show “106 & Park,” along with high school students from Chicago, tour the Howard University dorms. (Marvin Joseph/The Washington Post)

 

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Letters to the President: Stories of Health Reform

 

 

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Published on Apr 17, 2014

While in Austin, the President recently met with several Americans who wrote letters about the Affordable Care Act.

 

 

 

8 Million People Have Signed Up For Private Health Coverage Thanks To The Patient Protection And Affordable Care Act (ObamaCARES). Read All About The 8 Million.

 

 

President Obama: 8 Million People Have Signed Up for Private Health Coverage

 

Speaking from the White House Briefing Room this afternoon, President Obama announced that 8 millionAmericans have signed up for private health coverage thanks to the Affordable Care Act.

 

 

President Obama Speaks to the Press

 

Published on Apr 17, 2014

Before taking questions from the press in the White House Press Briefing Room, President Obama announces that 8 million people signed up for private health coverage in the Health Insurance Marketplace. April 17, 2014.

 

 

 

He noted that 35 percent of those people are under 35 years old.

 

What’s more, costs associated with expanding coverage under the Affordable Care Act are lower than expected.

 

And health care costs are growing at the slowest level on record. That slower growth in spending is reflected across MedicareMedicaid, and private insurance.

 

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Take a look at a few more important numbers, from a fact sheet released today:

 

  • 8 million people signed up for private insurance in the Health InsuranceMarketplace. For states that have Federally-Facilitated Marketplaces, 35 percent of those who signed up are under 35 years old, and 28 percent are between 18 and 34 years old, virtually the same youth percentage that signed up in Massachusetts in its first year of health reform.

 

  • 3 million young adults gained coverage thanks to the Affordable Care Act by being able to stay on their parents’ plan.

 

  • 3 million more people were enrolled in Medicaid and CHIP as of February, compared to before the Marketplaces opened. Medicaid and CHIP enrollment continues year-round.

 

  • 5 million people are enrolled in plans that meet ACA standards outside the Marketplace, according to aCBO estimate. When insurers set premiums for next year, they are required to look at everyone who enrolled in plans that meet ACA standards, both inside and outside the Marketplace.

 

  • 5.7 million people will be uninsured in 2016 because 24 states have chosen not to expand Medicaid — even though this expansion would be of no cost to states, as the President pointed out in today’s briefing.

 

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The bottom line, as the President said: “This thing is working.

 

#8Million #8Million #8Million

 

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@BarackObama The Affordable Care Act is working—for millions of Americans.

@BarackObama
The Affordable Care Act is working—for millions of Americans.

Can Ya'll Haters Please Kiss My Entire Black Ass?

Can Ya’ll Haters Please Kiss My Entire Black Ass?

 

 

 

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#8Million #8Million #8Million  #8Million  #8Million  #8Million  #8Million  #8Million  #8Million  #8Million #8Million

#8Million #8Million #8Million #8Million #8Million #8Million #8Million #8Million #8Million #8Million #8Million

Eight Million.....And Counting.

Eight Million…..And Counting.

Lets give a hand for eight million.

Lets give a hand for eight million.

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West Wing Week: 4/18/14 or, “Pull Together, Fight Back, and Win”

 

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Published on Apr 17, 2014

This week, the President nominated Sylvia Burwell as Secretary of Health and Human Services, hosted an Easter Prayer Breakfast and a PassoverSeder, discussed immigration reform with Faith leaders, welcomed the Wounded Warrior Soldier Ride, announced a major milestone in the continued implementation of the Affordable Care Act, and hit the road to New York City and Oakdale, Pennsylvania.

 

 

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Wounded Warriors Ride for Recovery

 

The Phoro Of The Year: President Obama Watches As The Riders Speed By.

The Phoro Of The Year: President Obama Watches As The Riders Speed By.

 

This morning, on the South Lawn of the White House, President Obama, Vice President Biden, and Secretary Shinseki welcomed riders participating in the Wounded Warrior Project’s Soldier Ride.

 

Today was the fifth time President Obama has welcomed Soldier Ride to the White House. The ride begins in Washington, D.C. and ends in Friendship, Maryland, spanning a total of 58 miles.

 

The Wounded Warrior Project’s Soldier Ride at the White House

 

Published on Apr 17, 2014

President Obama welcomes Wounded Warrior Project’s Soldier Ride to the White House in celebration of the seventh annual Soldier Ride. A cycling event to help Wounded Warriors restore their physical and emotional well-being, the Soldier Ride also raises awareness of our nation’s Wounded Warriors who battle the physical and psychological damages of war.

 

 

 

Remarks by the President Welcoming the Wounded Warrior Project’s Soldier Ride

South Lawn

11:06 A.M. EDT

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THE PRESIDENT:  Hello, everybody!  (Applause.)  Welcome to the White House.  Thank you to Ric for not just a nice introduction, but more importantly, for your outstanding service to our country and for your service to our veterans and fellow wounded warriors.

Now, I also want to mention that our Vice President here has been relentless in his support, along with our spouses, Michelle and Jill Biden, for military families.  And we’re very proud of everything that Joe has done.

This is now the fifth time that I’ve had the honor of welcoming the Soldier Ride to the White House.  And I have to tell you, this is one of my favorite events of the year.  First of all, you know it’s spring when — or at least it’s supposed to be spring — (laughter) — when the Soldier Ride comes around.  But mainly, it’s because those who participate are such an incredible inspiration to me and to our country.

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To all the riders, you look outstanding, especially after biking 17 miles yesterday.  You’re doing another 17 miles tomorrow, another 17 miles after that — all told, nearly 60 miles.  Today we wanted to come cheer you on.  And I think we’ve got some folks from the Army here, is that right?  (Hooah!)  And the Navy.  (Hooyah!)  Air Force.  (Applause.)  Marines.  (Oorah!)  Oh, that was good.  (Laughter.)  Coast Guard.  (Applause.)  And we’ve got some extraordinary families here today.  (Applause.)  Yay, families.

By now, everybody knows the story about how this got started.  You had a bartender on Long Island, Chris Carney, who came up with the idea of riding his bike across America to support wounded warriors.  Chris couldn’t be here today.  He owns a gym now; I think you all inspired him to trade the bar in for some barbells.  But today there are Soldier Rides all across the country, and we want to thank everybody at the Wounded Warriors Project for their incredible support.

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I know some of you are doing this for the very first time; some of you have ridden three or four times.  Some of you are riding in tandem with your parents.  Biking nearly 60 miles in three days would be a challenge for anybody, but for all of you this is a lot more than a bike ride — this is a mark of how far you’ve come.

Many of you are recovering from devastating injuries.  Some of you have had to learn the basics all over again — how to stand again, how to walk again, how to run again.  And now you’re here today because that’s what Soldier Ride is all about — seeing each other through the finish line.

Lieutenant Commander John Jae Terry is here.  Three years ago, he was on foot patrol in Afghanistan when he was hit by an IED, ended up losing his leg.  But reflecting on his service, he said he would do it all again.  Now, he’s got a new goal — get in the best shape possible so he can play with his three kids.  And so today he’s here on his first Soldier Ride.

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You’ve got Master Sergeant Louis Alfonso Ramirez.  Serving in Afghanistan, he lost good friends in a terrible ambush.  He even assisted at the airport as they began their dignified transfer home.  Later diagnosed with post-traumatic stress, credits the Wounded Warriors Project with helping him heal.  He says, “You know that they got you.”  This is now his fourth ride.

Sergeant Major Sedrick Banks is here.  An explosion in Iraq left him with injuries to his neck and his back, and traumatic brain injury.  But after years of rehab, Cedric is focused on the future.  He volunteers here in Washington, helps mentor young men with the life skills they need to succeed.  He calls himself now a “warrior for society.”  This is his first Soldier Ride.

Major Jeanette Nieves-Ayala is here.  And I first met Jeanette a few years ago at Walter Reed, where she was recovering from an injury received in Iraq.  As some of you know, when I visit with our troops I often hand out coins marked with the Seal of the President.  Jeanette shook my hand and she said, Mr. President, all these men think your coin is the best; I don’t.  I made a bet with them that there was a coin that could trump yours.  I said, what are you talking about?  She said, I want the First Lady’s coin.  (Laughter.)  The First Lady’s coin would beat yours.

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Now, it is true that the First Lady trumps me.  But Jeanette says her proudest accomplishment is being a peer mentor to other wounded warriors.  She says that during her recovery, “I was definitely being carried.  Now I feel like I am helping to carry others.”  So I want to thank you, Jeanette.

This ride is first and foremost for these incredible riders.  But it’s men and women like John and Louis and Cedric and Jeanette and all of you who make the ride so special for all of us, because you inspire us.  You inspire the country, some of whom will be out cheering along your ride.  You inspire me with your courage, your resolve, your resilience, your tenacity, your optimism.  It makes me proud to be your Commander-in-Chief.  And Michelle and I treasure every moment that we get to spend with you and your families.

Every day I have the honor of serving as this country’s Commander-in-Chief.  And as long as I have that honor, I will keep fighting to make sure you and your families get the care and treatment and benefits that you have earned and deserve.  When people ask of you to serve your country, to give your all to make your sacrifices, you’ve raised your hands.  You’ve stepped up.  You’ve held up your end of the bargain.  And it’s especially now, as we’re winding down the war in Afghanistan, after having ended over a decade of war, that we are standing up for you.  Our obligations to our veterans endure for your entire lives.  That’s our mission.  That’s why we’re here not just during this ride, but all year long.

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So with that, the sun is out.  It’s a spectacular day.  The racers look like they’re ready.  I think it’s time for us to get this party started.

God bless you.  God bless America.  Let’s get this going.  (Applause.)

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END
11:13 A.M. EDT

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Cheering on riders at the Wounded Warrior Project's Solider Ride this morning. #JoiningForces

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President Obama high fives a rider as he welcomes the Wounded Warrior Project’s Soldier Ride to the White House

President Obama makes a face as Nancy Loubin takes a photo of him at Wounded Warriors event at White House today

One of the riders taking part in the Wounded Warrior Project’s Soldier Ride, with a President Obama bobblehead in his jersey, waits in the Diplomatic Reception Room of the White House, April 17, 2014. (Official White House Photo by David Lienemann)

One of the riders taking part in the Wounded Warrior Project’s Soldier Ride, with a President Obama bobblehead in his jersey, waits in the Diplomatic Reception Room of the White House, April 17, 2014. (Official White House Photo by David Lienemann)

A Wounded Warrior exits the Diplomatic Reception Room of the White House to participate in the Soldier Ride, April 17, 2014. (WH Photo by Pete Souza)

A Wounded Warrior exits the Diplomatic Reception Room of the White House to participate in the Soldier Ride, April 17, 2014. (WH Photo by Pete Souza)

President Obama, Vice President Biden, and Secretary Shinseki cheer on participants in the Soldier Ride, April 17, 2014. (WH Photo by Chuck Kennedy)

President Obama, Vice President Biden, and Secretary Shinseki cheer on participants in the Soldier Ride, April 17, 2014. (WH Photo by Chuck Kennedy)

Participants in the seventh annual Soldier Ride make their way around the South Lawn of the White House, April 17, 2014. (WH Photo by Amanda Lucidon)

Participants in the seventh annual Soldier Ride make their way around the South Lawn of the White House, April 17, 2014. (WH Photo by Amanda Lucidon)

President Obama, Vice President Biden, and Secretary Shinseki welcome the Soldier Ride to the White House, April 17, 2014. (WH Photo by Pete Souza)

President Obama, Vice President Biden, and Secretary Shinseki welcome the Soldier Ride to the White House, April 17, 2014. (WH Photo by Pete Souza)

 

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Statements and Releases

 

Statement by the President on the Passing of Nobel Laureate Gabriel García Marquez

 

Readout of the President’s Call with Chancellor Merkel of Germany

 

FACT SHEET: Affordable Care Act by the Numbers

 

President Obama Signs Montana Disaster Declaration

 

Statement by the President on the Tragic Ferry Sinking Off the Coast of the Republic of Korea

 

First Lady Michelle Obama to Address 2014 Graduating Seniors

 

FACT SHEET: Building on Progress – Supporting Solar Deployment and Jobs

 

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President Obama Schedule || Friday, August 18,2014

 

10:00 am || Receives the Presidential Daily Briefing


10:45 am || Meets with Treasury Secretary Lew


11:35 am || Meets with the National Commander and Executive Director of the American Legion


2:00 am || Presents the Commander-in-Chief Trophy to the United States Naval Academy football team

 

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News You Won’t Hear: 100 % Chicago’s Urban Prep Academy Graduates Accepted To College For Fifth Years In A Row!


 

By Jueseppi B.

 

 

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CONGRATULATIONS, YOUNG MEN!

 

100 % Chicago’s Urban Prep Academy Graduates Accepted to College for Fifth Years in a Row!

 

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Tim King Announces Urban Prep’s 100% College Acceptance Rate 2014

 

Published on Apr 10, 2014

On April 8, 2014, Urban Prep Academies, the country’s first network of charter public schools for boys, held an assembly to announce that for the FIFTH year in a row, 100% of Urban Prep seniors–all African-American males–had been admitted to four-year colleges and universities.

 

Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel joined Urban Prep Academies’ founder and CEO Tim King, elected officials, community leaders, and Urban Prep students, faculty, alumni and parents in celebrating the seniors’ achievements.

 

To congratulate the seniors, Tragil Wade, president of Wade’s World Foundation — the charity foundation of NBA champion Dwyane Wade and longtime philanthropic partner of Urban Prep — announced that Wade’s World Foundation will provide a $10,000 donation to the Class of 2014 to offset the costs of their senior prom.

 

With 240 seniors graduating from Urban Prep this year, more than one in ten African-American males from Chicago Public Schools enrolling in college as freshmen in the fall will be an Urban Prep alumnus. Seniors in Urban Prep’s Class of 2014 have accrued more than $12 million in scholarships to date and have been accepted to more than 185 four-year colleges and universities across the nation, including: Cornell University, Florida A & M University, Georgetown University, Grinnell College, Howard University, Morehouse College, Syracuse University, Tufts University, the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign and the University of Virginia. This year, for the first time, Urban Prep seniors have also been admitted to Colgate University, Emory University, the University of Michigan, Williams College and the United States Military Academy–West Point.

 

 

 

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From Lee Bailey’s EURO WEB.com:

 

5 Years Straight: Every Graduate of Chicago’s Urban Prep Accepted to College

 

Chicago Mayor Emanuel Congratulates Urban Prep Academy Class of 2014 (April 8, 2014)

Chicago Mayor Emanuel Congratulates Urban Prep Academy Class of 2014 (April 8, 2014)

 

Chicago’s Urban Prep Academy has done it again.

For the fifth year in a row, the school has achieved a 100 percent college acceptance rate for its senior class. This year, 240 students got acceptance letters from four-year colleges and universities.

As part of an Urban Prep ritual, when seniors are admitted into college, they exchange their red uniform ties for a red and gold striped tie, a symbol of how hard they’ve worked.

“The tie represents to me moving on from a boy to becoming a young man and actually doing something with my life,” graduating senior Dumar Harris told NBC.

Mayor Rahm Emanuel was on hand to congratulate the scholars, and NBA star Dwayne Wade donated $10,000 through his foundation to offset the cost of the student prom.

The Urban Prep seniors – all African American males – received over $11 million in college grants and scholarships. They were admitted to over 185 colleges and universities, including Cornell University, Florida A & M University, Georgetown University, Grinnell College, Howard University, Morehouse College, Syracuse University, Tufts University, the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign and the University of Virginia.

This year, for the first time, Urban Prep seniors have also been admitted to Colgate University, Emory University, the University of Michigan, Williams College, and the United States Military Academy (West Point).

Thank you Lee Bailey’s EURO WEB.com



 

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From The Root.com:

 

Chicago’s Urban Prep Does It Again: 100 Percent College Acceptance

 

For the fifth straight year, Urban Prep Academies’ entire graduating class has been accepted into four-year colleges and universities.

 

From the time they enter Chicago’s Urban Prep Academies, the young men are asked to wear red ties. They may change these ties only once: after they have been admitted into college. During this year’s graduation ceremony, students who had achieved the honor were given new yellow ties with red stripes, a gesture to symbolize the hard work and dedication displayed in not only graduating from high school but also continuing to pursue education in one of the nation’s toughest cities.

 

For the fifth year in a row, all of the graduating students at Urban Prep Academies’ three campuses (pdf)—240, to be exact—donned new ties as the graduating class has again achieved a 100 percent acceptance rate into four-year colleges and universities.

 

“The tie represents, to me, moving on from a boy to becoming a young man and actually doing something with my life,” graduating senior Dumar Harris told NBC Chicago.

 

Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel spoke at the graduation Tuesday, and NBA star and Chicago native Dwyane Wade donated $10,000 through his foundation to help pay for the prom, NBC Chicago reports.

 

“I got into a lot of different schools, but right now I’m thinking about four different choices,” student Keshawn Cathery told NBC Chicago.

 

“I got into Georgetown University, which I will be attending in the fall,” student Derrick Little said.

 

The 2010 class, the first to graduate from the Chicago school, is on course to graduate from college.

 

“Being the first graduating class, you see a lot of progression, you see a lot of downfall, but everything comes just together. If you keep striving for that one goal, no one can tell you no,” Urban Prep alumnus Paris Williams told the news station.

 

With its challenging curriculum, the public charter school has had some students leave the program because they weren’t able to manage it. “Urban Prep is not for everyone, and those students may leave us,” school founder and CEO Tim King told the news station. “But the fact that some students choose to leave us should not be used as a weapon against the students who have chosen to stay and have achieved this incredible accomplishment.”

 

Thank you The Root.com.

 

 

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The Chicago Urban Prep Academies Facebook Page

 

 

Urban Prep Academies is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization that operates a network of all-boys public schools including the country’s first charter high school for boys. Urban Prep’s mission is to provide a high-quality and comprehensive college-preparatory educational experience to young men that results in our graduates succeeding in college. The schools are a direct response to the urgent need to reverse abysmal graduation and college completion rates among boys in urban centers. While most of Urban Prep students come to the schools from economically disadvantaged households and behind in many subject areas, Urban Prep remains committed to preparing all of its students for college and life.

 

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Building a positive school culture is very important at Urban Prep as it helps promote positive self-esteem and high achievement.

Urban Prep Creed

One way we foster a positive school culture is by holding our students accountable to live by the Urban Prep Creed which they recite each morning in Community. The Creed was developed by Team UP prior to the opening of the school and it has been embraced by our entire community.

 

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Urban Prep Charter Academy for Young Men
Bronzeville Campus • Englewood Campus • West Campus

 

420 North Wabash • Suite 300
Chicago, Illinois 60611
p 312.276.0259   312.755.1050

 

 

URBAN PREP ACADEMIES Campuses:

 

The Bronzeville Campus:

 

2710 S. Dearborn
Chicago, IL 60616

School Phone:  773.624.3444

Principal – Mr. Richard Glass
Asst. Principal – Mr. Roy Curry

The Bronzeville Campus, our newest campus, is located in the heart of Chicago’s Douglas & Grand Boulevard communities, once called the “Black Metropolis” for its extensive historical value to African-American art and culture.  Bronzeville attracts residents, both young and old, with its boldly revitalized brownstones and its close proximity to Loop, Lakefront and South Side attractions.  As this community continues to revitalize itself, Urban Prep young men will be at the forefront, serving as community change agents.

 

 

 

The Englewood Campus:

 

6201 S. Stewart Ave.
Chicago, IL 60621

School Phone:  773.535.9724

Principal – Mr. Dennis Lacewell
Asst. Principal – Mr. Joffrey Bywater

The Englewood Community has a complex and storied history.  As a stop on the Underground Railroad, Englewood was an early beacon of hope for African-Americans escaping slavery.  Today, Englewood is on track to shine again with opportunity and our first campus, Urban Prep Charter Academy for Young Men — Englewood Campus, seeks to be of the lights in this rekindling.

 

 

 

The West Campus:

 

1326 W. 14th Place
Chicago, IL 60608

School Phone:  773.534.8860

Principal – Mr. Ronald Bryant
Asst. Principal – Mr. Dion Steele

The West Campus is located in one of Chicago’s most ethnically diverse communities.  First settled by Nobel Peace Prize Awardee Jane Addams in the nineteenth century, this community is home to some of the city’s greatest attractions and venues:  the United Center, Greektown, University Village, Maxwell Street and the Illinois Medical District.  Urban Prep is proud to call this neighborhood its home.

 

 

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Barack & Michelle & Denzel & “Raisin in the Sun.”


 

By Jueseppi B.

On Thursday, the cast of the Broadway revival of “A Raisin in the Sun” was told that a “high-level official” would be coming to the show the next night....It was The Obama's.

On Thursday, the cast of the Broadway revival of “A Raisin in the Sun” was told that a “high-level official” would be coming to the show the next night….It was The Obama’s.

 

President Barack Obama and First Lady Michelle along with Senior Advisor Valerie Jarrett and her friend Ahmad Rashad. took in a show,  “A Raisin in the Sun.” Image the joy & surprise of the cast.

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The South Siders in the White House—President Barack Obama and First Lady Michelle—took in a Broadway show on Friday, the revival of “Raisin’ in the Sun,” Lorraine Hansberry’s story of racial animosity a black family faced when they moved into a white South Side Chicago neighborhood.

In Manhattan, the First Couple went to dinner and then to a play dealing with Chicago’s struggle against racial inequality to cap a week where Obama, the nation’s first African-American president delivered a speech to mark the 50th anniversary of the signing of the 1964 Civil Right Act and a speech to a New York based civil rights group, the National Action Network.

Joining the president and Mrs. Obama for the night out were another South Sider, White House senior Advisor Valerie Jarrett and her friend, Ahmad Rashad.

The play draws from Hansberry’s real life experiences when her father moved the family to 6140 S. Rhodes Ave. during an era when Chicago real estate contracts enforced segregation by banning sales to blacks and Jews through the use of restrictive covenants.

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The Hansberry family was met by hostile whites wanting them out of the Rhodes house and uses this painful experience is the center piece of “Raisin in the Sun” which made its Broadway debut in 1959.

(The Rhodes building is now a Chicago literary landmark.)

The revival stars Denzel Washington, Anika Noni Rose, LaTanya Richardson, Bryce Clyde Jenkins, Sean Patrick Thomas and Sophie Okonedo.

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Jarrett told me, “We all thought it was terrific. Entire cast was outstanding. An important play that is timeless. Great history lesson for the younger generation.”

By coincidence, another native South Sider–and a friend of Mrs. Obama–was in the audience, Paul Butler, a law professor at Georgetown University in Washington.

Butler grew up at 95th and Yale St., attended St. Ignatius College Prep then to Yale and Harvard, where he met Michelle Robinson.

“We were friends, in part because we had the Chicago connection.  I haven’t seen her a lot since law school, but I’ve run into her a few times, most recently at campaign events. I had the good fortune to be seated in an aisle and Michelle saw me, said “Hey Paul” and gave me a hug.  That made my year!

AT THE THEATER

Before the play at the Barrymore Theater started, Butler said “the crowd was beside itself with excitement.

“There was Secret Service all around, and the audience had to go through metal detectors to enter the theater so everyone knew the president was coming but still…to see him and Michelle walk in the room.

The Barrymore Theatrem where The First Couple watched Denzel Washington starred in the play "A Raisin in the Sun"

The Barrymore Theatrem where The First Couple watched Denzel Washington starred in the play “A Raisin in the Sun”

“Everyone stood up and didn’t just applaud, they cheered.  And kept cheering for almost ten minutes. People would stop applauding and then it would start up again.  Broadway theaters are not large amphitheaters, so I think part of it was you felt physically proximate to him.  They kept making an announcement, something like “Out of respect for the actors, ladies and gentlemen, please take your seats.”

“…Although another whole round of squeals started when Denzel first came on stage.  I have to say the play itself was so powerful, both the writing and the acting, that when it started everyone focused on it.  And the presidential party was exceptionally gracious and low key- shaking hands with audience members and they joined in the standing ovation for the actors after the play ended.”

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BUTLER’S POSTSCRIPT

Butler’s family has been in Chicago for generations, a “Chicago classic” story.

“ My mom is a retired public school teacher, my grandfather was a Pullman Porter -his parents were from Mississippi,” Butler said.

“…The play has always been personal for me, growing up in Chicago.  I’ve probably seen seven or eight different productions.

“I always remember Martin Luther King saying Chicago was one of the most segregated cities he had ever seen, and how I didn’t know any white people for the first 13 years of my life, until I went to St. Ignatius.

“I could literally go for days and never see one, except on TV.  My great grandmother lived in a mainly black senior citizens building in Bridgeport, and walking to the store there could be a terrifying experience.

“So I always felt like I knew the consequences of where the family in “Raisin” were moving to, and how much courage it took – courage just to want a better live for your family!  NYC and DC are segregated, but not like Chicago.

“I have a lot of artsy and political friends who would prefer Broadway put on new plays by African-American playwrights and not old dusties like “Raisin,” but when you see it, it feels contemporary, in part because it is so well written, but in part because the issues of inequality and “polite” racial animus are still very much with us.

“The presence of the first African-American president was at once inspiring and sobering.  Inspiring because Walter Lee was a big dreamer, but he probably would never have dreamed of a Black president, just a couple of generations down the road.

“I remember my mom, who was a schoolteacher, would sometimes have to go to a credit union near Cicero, which was famously exclusionary and racist.  I would wait in the car and be scared to death.  So the presence of a Black president, who came into his own in Chicago, was richly satisfying.

“It makes me feel vindicated, somehow.  I kind of felt like his presence rebuked the white guy in the play from the Clyborne Park Improvement Association and the white teenagers who would try to intimidate me in Bridgeport.  But Obama’s presence was also sobering because even with a Black president, we are nowhere near post-racial.  Nowhere near.  That’s the focus of a lot of my scholarship.  That’s why the play doesn’t feel dated.”

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TO KNOW MORE ABOUT LORRAINE HANSBERRY 

CHICAGO PUBLIC LIBRARY BIO

CITY OF CHICAGO LANDMARKS:  6140 S. RHODES WAS MADE A LANDMARK ON FEB. 10, 2010

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Tickets to watch Denzel Washington on Broadway in “A Raisin in the Sun” are hard to come by, but one man managed it — President Barack Obama.

The only recognition from the cast of their special guests was when Washington tipped his cap in their direction at the curtain call, which was already a standing ovation. The president and his wife went backstage to greet the actors at intermission.

“I’m so glad. I’m so happy that he came to see the show,” said 13-year-old Bryce Clyde Jenkins, who is making his Broadway debut. “It means so much to me that the president took time out from whatever he was doing to come see a show like ours.”

The Obamas took their orchestra section seats to huge applause that was repeated when they left, shaking hands as they went up and down the aisle. The president wore a suit and the first lady wore a sparkly black top and a chic black leather jacket.

There was a 20-minute delay in the beginning of the show when an alarm flooded the theater with a piercing sound. A huge ovation greeted its end. Though asked to put away cellphones, virtually every audience-member whipped them out to take flash shots of the Obamas, lighting up the darkened theater.

 

 

Lorraine Hansberry’s play, set in 1950s Chicago, centers on a struggling working-class black family anxiously awaiting a $10,000 insurance check and the ensuing squabbles over how to spend it. It may touch a chord with Obama, who calls Chicago home and who has a parent from Africa, a strong theme in the play.

 

 

Stephen McKinley Henderson, who only appears in the second act, shook the president’s hand at intermission and was floored by the power of the moment. Michelle Obama, who clearly knew the play, recognized Henderson’s character and asked him if he’d be on stage soon, then gave him a hug. “I’ll never be the same!” Henderson said.

 

 

The Obamas have been big boosters of Broadway during his presidency. Michelle Obama and daughters Sasha and Malia have attended performances of “Memphis,” ”Spider-Man: Turn Off the Dark,” ”Sister Act,” ”The Trip to Bountiful,” ”Motown the Musical” and “The Addams Family.” And the first couple saw “Joe Turner’s Come and Gone” during a date night in 2009. Michelle Obama and six girlfriends also saw “Fela!” in 2010.

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President Barack Obama and first lady Michelle Obama walk to the White House after arriving on the South Lawn, on Saturday, April 12, 2014, in Washington. Obama traveled to New York to deliver remarks at a National Action Network event, and attended the play "A Raisin in the Sun" at the Barrymore Theatre. (Credit: AP / Evan Vucci)

President Barack Obama and first lady Michelle Obama walk to the White House after arriving on the South Lawn, on Saturday, April 12, 2014, in Washington. Obama traveled to New York to deliver remarks at a National Action Network event, and attended the play “A Raisin in the Sun” at the Barrymore Theatre. (Credit: AP / Evan Vucci)

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An Update On The President’s My Brother’s Keeper Initiative.


 

By Jueseppi B.

President Barack Obama delivers remarks at an event to highlight "My Brother's Keeper," an initiative to expand opportunity for young men and boys of color, in the East Room of the White House, Feb. 27, 2014. (Official White House Photo by Pete Souza)

President Barack Obama delivers remarks at an event to highlight “My Brother’s Keeper,” an initiative to expand opportunity for young men and boys of color, in the East Room of the White House, Feb. 27, 2014. (Official White House Photo by Pete Souza)

 

An Update on the President’s My Brother’s Keeper Initiative

 

 

“My administration’s policiesfrom early childhood education to job training, to minimum wagesare designed to give a hand up to everybody, every child, every American willing to work hard and take responsibility for their own success. That’s the larger agenda. 

 

 

President Obama Speaks on the My Brother’s Keeper Initiative

 

Published on Feb 27, 2014

President Obama launches a new effort aimed at empowering boys and young men of color, a segment of our society that too often faces disproportionate challenges and obstacles to success. February 27, 2014.

 

 

 

But the plain fact is there are some Americans who, in the aggregate, are consistently doing worse in our societygroups that have had the odds stacked against them in unique ways that require unique solutions; groups who’ve seen fewer opportunities that have spanned generations. And by almost every measure, the group that is facing some of the most severe challenges in the 21st century in this country are boys and young men of color.”

 

President Obama used these words to launch My Brother’s Keeper, his initiative to help ensure that boys and young men of color in America have the opportunity to reach their full potential.

 

Since then, the public response has been overwhelming. We’ve heard from private philanthropies and businesses, mayors, state and local leaders, faith organizations, community based non-profits, and thousands of  interested citizens, all who are committed to creating more pathways to success for these boys and young men. We will continue to engage and listen to these critical voices and those of the boys and young men this initiative focuses on, as we continue to learn from the efforts of the many stakeholders who have been committed to this cause for years. And we will do our best to live up to the optimism and incredible expectations this initiative has unleashed.

 

The first phase of the initiative has already begun in earnest and we want to provide an update on our progress to date and a sense of what to expect in the near future.

 

The Task Force has begun a 90-day process to develop the plans and infrastructure required to implement and sustain the initiative’s efforts. We are currently listening and engaging, working with stakeholders across the country to get their feedback on how we can all work together to make this initiative a success.

 

On the day of the launch in February, President Obama signed aPresidential Memorandum on “Creating and Expanding Ladders of Opportunity for Boys and Young Men of Color” which created a Federal Task Force to provide an assessment of and recommendations on how public and private actors can improve measurably expected educational and life outcomes and address persistent opportunity gaps. To inform that work, the President called for tools that will assess critical indicators of life outcomes for boys and young men of color and online engagement to lift up strategies, practices and programs with strong evidence of improving outcomes.

 

The Task Force’s work begins with identifying these critical indicators. We are focusing on five key moments that mark critical junctures on the path to healthy and productive adulthood: early learning and literacy, pathway to college and careers, ladders to jobs, mentors and support networks, and interactions with criminal justice and violent crime. Participating federal agencies are also now beginning to assess strategies, practices and programs to determine how they impact life outcomes for boys and young men of color. All of this work will inform a report by the Task Force on our progress and recommendations that we will submit to the President at the end of this 90-day listening and learning process.

 

At the same time, ten leading foundations have launched aprivate sector coalition that seeks to invest at least $200 million dollars over the next five years to find and rapidly spread solutions that have the highest potential for impact. This is on top of $150 million in current spending that these foundations have already committed toward this work. These foundations have announced they aim to put in place a strategy and infrastructure for coordination of their investments and additional commitments from a diverse array of actors from other sectors.

 

My Brother’s Keeper is focused on unlocking the full potential of boys and young men of colorsomething that will not only benefit them, but all of America. The Federal Task Force will pursue collaborative and multidisciplinary approaches to building ladders of opportunity. We are excited about the progress we are making and believe this effort has the potential to teach us a great deal about using evidence-based strategies to achieve the universal goals we have for all of our nation’s children.

 

Broderick Johnson is Assistant to the President and White House Cabinet Secretary, and the Chair of the My Brother’s Keeper Task Force. Jim Shelton is the Deputy Secretary of Education and Executive Director of the Task Force.

 

More information:

Related Topics: Urban Policy

 

 

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TheObamaCrat™ Wake-Up Call For HuMpDaY The 9th Of April, 2014. Fort Hood Memorial. Houston


 

By Jueseppi B.

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White House Schedule – April 9th, 2014

 

President Barack Obama and First Lady Michelle fly to Texas on Wednesday  to attend a memorial for the victims of the latest shooting in Fort Hood. Later, they head to Houston for fundraisers to benefit the House and Senate campaign operations.

 

THE WHITE HOUSE
Office of the Press Secretary
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
April 9th, 2014

 

DAILY GUIDANCE AND SCHEDULE FOR
WEDNESDAY, April 9th, 2014

 

 

In the morning, the President and First Lady will travel to Killeen, Texas. The departure from the South Lawn and arrival at Robert Gray Army Airfield are open press.

 

In Killeen, the President and First Lady will attend a memorial ceremony on Fort Hood.  The President will deliver remarks paying tribute to the victims of the tragedy that occurred on April 2.  The ceremony is pooled for TV and open to limited, pre-credentialed stills and correspondents.

 

Following this event, the President and First Lady will depart Killeen en route Houston, Texas. The departure from Robert Gray Army Airfield and the arrival at George Bush Intercontinental Airport are open press.

 

While in Houston, the President will attend a DNC event. Following this, the President will deliver remarks and answer questions at a joint DCCC/DSCC dinner. The first event is closed press, and the dinner is open to the print pool for remarks only.

 

The President and First Lady will remain overnight in Houston.

 

 

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Wednesday, April 9th 2014 All Times ET

 

 

9:05 AM: The President and First Lady depart the White House, South Lawn.

 

9:20 AM: The President and First Lady depart Joint Base Andrews.

 

12:30 PM: The President and First Lady arrive in Killeen, Texas. Local Event Time: 11:30 AM. Robert Gray Army Airfield.

 

3:00 PM: The President and First Lady attend a memorial ceremony, Local Event Time: 2:00 PM. Fort Hood, Sadowski Field.

 

5:20 PM: The President and First Lady arrive in Houston, Texas. Local Event Time: 4:20 PM. George Bush Intercontinental Airport.

 

6:00 PM: The President attends a DNC event. Local Event Time: 5:00 PM. Private Residence’

 

8:20 PM: The President delivers remarks and answers questions at a joint DCCC/DSCC dinner. Local Event Time: 7:20 PM. Private Residence.

 

The President and First Lady will remain overnight in Houston.

 

 

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Barack Hussein Obama Week Ahead Schedule, April 9th, To 11th, 2014

 

On Wednesday, the President and the First Lady will travel to Houston, TX. The President will attend DCCC and DSCC events.  More details regarding the President and First Lady’s travel to Houston will be forthcoming.

 

President Barack Obama and first lady Michelle Obama will attend Wednesday’s memorial service for the victims of last week’s shooting rampage at Fort Hood, Texas, a top White House official announced.

 

Obama vowed after the shootings that “We’re going to get to the bottom of exactly what happened” at Fort Hood, where three soldiers were killed and 16 wounded Wednesday afternoon by a soldier who then took his own life. Investigators have identified the killer as Spc. Ivan Lopez, a 34-year-old Iraq war veteran with a history of depression and anxiety.

White House senior adviser Dan Pfeiffer confirmed the trip Sunday morning during an appearance on CBS’s “Face the Nation.” Obama also addressed the memorial service for an earlier massacre at Fort Hood, in 2009.

 

On Thursday, the President and the First Lady will travel to the Lyndon Baines Johnson Library in Austin, TX.  The President will deliver remarks at a Civil Rights Summit to commemorate the 50th anniversary of the signing of the Civil Rights Act. The President and the First Lady will return to Washington, DC, in the afternoon.

 

On Friday, the President will travel to New York, NY to deliver remarks at the National Action Network’s 16th Annual Convention.

 

 

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White House LIVE!!! Streaming

 

Next Up…

 

Fort Hood TexasWhite House LIVE!!! Streaming

 

 

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Press Briefing

4/8/14: White House Press Briefing

 

Published on Apr 8, 2014

White House Press Briefings are conducted most weekdays from the James S. Brady Press Briefing Room in the West Wing.

 

 

 

 

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President Obama Speaks on Equal Pay for Equal Work

 

Published on Apr 8, 2014

Following an introduction by Lilly Ledbetter, President Obama announces two new executive actions to strength

 

 

 

 

Raw: Hagel Tours Forbidden City Amid Dispute

 

Published on Apr 9, 2014

During a trip to China, Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel toured Beijing’s Forbidden City, Wednesday, a day after he and his Chinese counterpart squared off over territorial disputes in the East China Sea. (April 9)

 

 

 

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President Barack Obama and First Lady Michelle Obama walk from the White House before boarding the Marine One helicopter, for a short trip to Andrews Air Force base, Md., then onto Fort Hood, Texas for a memorial service in honor of those who died.

 

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President Barack Obama and First Lady Michelle Obama walk on the South Lawn of the White House before boarding the Marine One helicopter.

President Barack Obama and First Lady Michelle Obama walk on the South Lawn of the White House before boarding the Marine One helicopter.

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President Barack Obama and First Lady Michelle Obama board Air Force One

President Barack Obama and First Lady Michelle Obama board Air Force One

 

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PENNSYLVANIA School Stabbing.

 

As many as 20 people were injured Wednesday morning at Franklin Regional High School in Murrysville, where a student began stabbing people just before the start of the school day, according to Westmoreland County emergency management…Not all 20 of the injured people were actually stabbed, Stevens said. Some of the injuries were described as cuts and scrapes. Several police cars and ambulances are at the high school. Three medical helicopters are also there. A student reported that someone came into the school with a knife and started slashing people, including some of his friends. That information has not been confirmed by police.

 

 

BREAKING: 20 Stabbed at Franklin Regional High School Pennsylvania

 

MASS STABBING: As many as 20 injured in stabbings at Pennsylvania school, 1 arrested.
MURRYSVILLE, Pa. (AP) – April 9, 2014 (WPVI) — As many as 20 people may be injured after a stabbing incident at a high school near Pittsburgh Wednesday morning, WTAE reports.

 

Dan Stevens, the spokesman for Westmoreland County emergency management, says a suspect has been taken into custody at Franklin Regional High School in Murrysville. That’s about 15 miles east of Pittsburgh.

 

 

 

 

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