Former first lady Michelle Obama addresses young women during downtown event

First lady Michelle Obama speaks Feb. 13, 2018, at Bankers Life Fieldhouse in Indianapolis. (Photo via Video Provided/Pool)

INDIANAPOLIS (WISH) – Former first lady Michelle Obama was in Indianapolis on Tuesday, speaking to a crowd of about 12,000 people at Bankers Life Fieldhouse.

It was part of an event organized by the Women’s Fund of Central Indiana, an organization that works to empower women in need. They tell us the event raised around $1 million for their efforts.

The former first lady spoke about her time in the White House and how she overcame obstacles along the way. Much of the conversation was geared toward young women here in Indianapolis.

Indianapolis Public Schools received about 300 tickets for the event. They were distributed to the high schools and given to hard-working young women.

24-Hour News 8 spoke with some of those IPS students, who said they said they consider Michelle Obama a role model. Many students used the word ‘honored’ to describe how they felt about being part of the crowd. They said they consider the chance to hear her speak a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity and they say the things she spoke about are lessons they will carry with them.

“She is a black woman and out of all the stereotypes that have been placed on her she broke free of those and she rose, and she now is one of the greatest black women that modern America has seen in such a long time,” said student Zhy’ion Hoover.

“Being a female of color and also being an immigrant, you always are looked at like, I don’t know what she is going to do and I’m like you don’t know me, but you judge me just by my color. I’ve learned to rise up from all those tribulations and just do me and just be the best I can be,” said Precious Adekanye.

The organization also selected a small group of IPS students to meet the former first lady after the event.