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Grab some friends and dream a little, encourage some family members to meet their educational goals, or get on board with coworkers to plan some exciting projects because it’s time to celebrate reaching higher! Take a bit of time for inspiration and motivation by participating in National Reach As High As You Can Day. 

History of National Reach As High As You Can Day

When former First Lady Michelle Obama began to speak out about the need for more Americans to be educated past a high school diploma, this passion contributed to the launch of the Reach Higher Initiative in 2014. Even beyond her time as First Lady of the United States, Michelle Obama has continued to tell her own story of being a first generation college student who enrolled at Princeton.

That encouragement to go further, combined with an effort to provide high school students with more access to school guidance counselors, was likely part of the motivation behind National Reach As High As You Can Day.

Since its inception, the hope is that this encouraging day will continue to grow in scope and creativity as more people are encouraged to participate, whether in school, in the workplace, in places of higher education or among the community. There’s always more potential to be reached and the sky is the limit when it comes to National Reach As High As You Can Day!

How to Celebrate National Reach As High As You Can Day

Aim high – and then aim even higher – in celebration of National Reach As High As You Can Day when it’s fun and exciting to observe the day with some of these ideas:

Set Goals or Work Toward Those Goals

Those who haven’t yet gotten their goals down on paper might want to spend some time on National Reach As High As You Can Day brainstorming some ideas. After all, how is it possible to know where to reach if there are no tangible goals?

Folks who already have their goals made can take some time on this important day to make steps in the right direction of those goals. Sure, it might be a long term goal, but each day brings the opportunity to move in the right direction! 

Watch Films About Reaching Higher

Whether told through books or films, stories are a great way to get inspired by the way others, whether fictional or biographical, have lived out their dreams. Have fun watching some of these movies to connect with the characters and find motivation behind them:

  • Rocky (1976). A classic Academy Award winning film which was written by Sylvester Stallone, who also starred in the movie. This story is about a poor debt collector who sidelines as a boxer but eventually gets an opportunity to fight against a heavyweight champ.
  • Forrest Gump (1994). Played by Tom Hanks, Forrest goes on a huge adventure and eventually finds himself back with his childhood sweetheart.
  • The Pursuit of Happyness (2006). Will Smith portrays Chris Gardener in this portrayal inspired by a true story of a man who went from being a homeless single father to creating a better life for his son.
  • The Life of Pi (2012). Adapted from Yann Martel’s novel, this film tells the story of a young survivor in the sea who then heads out on a grand journey, making a connection with an unexpected friend – a Bengal tiger.

Apply for and Attend College

According to Michelle Obama, an important aspect of reaching high is getting an education after high school. Whether applying for and enrolling in a 4-year university, trade school, or community college, the opportunities for those with a college education are higher than those who have gone to high school. Set those sights high and then aim for the stars in celebration of National Reach As High As You Can Day!

Those who are looking for resources to help with college applications, financial aid and more, can access information and resources through the official White House website, including toolkits, links, financial aid calculators, logos and more.  

Make a Soundtrack for Reaching High

What could be a better way to accompany National Reach As High As You Can Day than with music?! This is a great time to create an inspiring soundtrack and then play it on repeat. Whether listening with headphones on a morning job or blasting it in the car on the way to work, a playlist that encourages folks to aim high and reach higher is just what is needed for celebrating this day.

Get a playlist started with some of these fun ideas for songs that inspire:

  • Don’t Stop Believin’ by Journey (1981)
  • Part of Your World by Jodi Benson (1989 from The Little Mermaid)
  • High Hopes by Panic! At The Disco (2018)
  • We Are the Champions by Queen (1977)

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