Speaking June 6 at Apple’s Worldwide Developers Conference in San Jose, California, former First Lady Michelle Obama called on the audience to step up to help the next generation tackle new problems arising across the globe.
“You’ve got to think about how somewhere in your work, in your life, you’re bringing somebody else up,” she said. “Whether it’s just finding someone in the neighborhood and spending a little time with them, I think we all have a responsibility to develop the next generation, and make sure we have people who are going to take our places.”
“You’re here, you’re blessed,” she told the audience. “So what are you going to do to pass those blessings on?”
She figures if each person does his or her part and finds one person to mentor, to push forward – “maybe even push in front of us – just imagine what we create,” it would make a huge difference.
The nation and the planet will be facing “tremendous challenges,” she said, noting the room was filled with problem solvers and creators.
She urged the audience to prepare themselves and their businesses to take on some of these problems.
It can’t be just about making money, or the next cool app, she told the more than 5,000 attendees, many of them software developers.
“Or, is there a place in your heart, in your soul, in your business, to be a change-maker for the world?” Obama asked.
She said that she and her husband, former President Barack Obama, would “be in it.”
“But, it’s time for the next generation to step up.”
“I hope that you all are role models, problem solvers – that you figure out a way to use your talents to benefit the greater good, and that you bring somebody else along with you, particularly if it’s a woman or someone of color or someone who typically doesn’t have access to these opportunities.
“Do that. Be that change agent.”