Gary Comer Youth Center Welcomes First Lady Michelle Obama and Spouses of Foreign Leaders

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First Lady Michelle Obama and the spouses of the NATO Summit and G8 foreign leaders will visit Gary Comer Youth Center this Sunday, May 20.

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We are honored to welcome First Lady Michelle Obama and her distinguished guests and to demonstrate how we have been able to make a difference on Chicago’s South Side.

First Lady Michelle Obama and the spouses of the NATO Summit and G8 foreign leaders will visit Gary Comer Youth Center this Sunday, May 20 at 11:30 a.m. Guests will learn about the Youth Center’s innovative educational and extracurricular programs, view dance and cultural performances by Chicago-area youth, and enjoy a private lunch created by Chef Paul Kahan, who has worked with Youth Center culinary students in preparing the meal.

First Lady Michelle Obama will provide guests with a full tour of the Youth Center facility, highlighting the Youth Urban Agriculture Program held at the rooftop garden, recording studio, visual arts studio, dance and fitness studio, the culinary program and more. Performances will be conducted by the South Shore Drill Team, the Muntu Dance Theater and the Soul Children of Chicago.

“Our goal is to provide programs and resources that ensure our youth members succeed in school and are empowered to seek their full potential in life,” said Greg Mooney, Gary Comer Youth Center’s Executive Director. “We are honored to welcome First Lady Michelle Obama and her distinguished guests and to demonstrate how we have been able to make a difference on Chicago’s South Side.”

Located in the Grand Crossing community, the Gary Comer Youth Center was established in 2006 with a mission to provide area youth with diverse educational and extracurricular enrichment that will equip them to graduate high school prepared to pursue college and meaningful careers. More than 1,000 youth members utilize the Center’s education and support services. Currently, 97 percent of Youth Center seniors are on track to graduate high school and 94 percent have been accepted into a four year college.

“We are addressing a critical need that transcends all countries and cultures, and requires significant commitment and resources,” added Mooney. “We hope that the spotlight on our model inspires others to invest in our youth the world over.”

The organization was founded by the late Gary Comer, founder of Lands’ End. Additional programs and services offered within the 80,000-square-foot facility include academic tutoring, college readiness courses, leadership training, health and wellness services, media training, performing arts and technology, among others.

The Gary Comer Youth Center campus was expanded in 2008 with the creation of Gary Comer College Prep in partnership with the Noble Network of Charter Schools. Comer College Prep, whose students make use of the Youth Center’s facilities and extracurricular activities, is graduating 100 percent of its Class of 2012, and 100 percent have been accepted into a four year college. Many students will be attending top-100 schools such as Dartmouth, Northwestern, Vanderbilt, University of Southern California, Boston College, Carnegie-Mellon and more.

About Gary Comer Youth Center
Gary Comer Youth Center was established in 2006 on Chicago’s South Side by the late Gary Comer, creator of Lands’ End, to provide young people with programs and resources to ensure they are equipped to graduate high school prepared to pursue college and meaningful careers. The Center serves over 1,000 youth, offering academic tutoring, college readiness courses, urban agriculture, a culinary program, visual arts opportunities, and fitness and physical education classes. In addition to the Youth Center’s 80,000 square-foot facility, the educational campus houses the Gary Comer College Prep, which seeks to develop well-rounded and successful college graduates based on the Noble Network pillars of scholarship, discipline, and honor. For more information, please visit: http://www.gcychome.org

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Amanda Gregory
Reputation Partners, on behalf of Gary Comer Youth Center
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