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Natalia Lusinski
May 01, 2016 3:45 pm

It’s official — Malia Obama will be attending Harvard University for college… but after she takes a gap year. So, she’ll start in 2017. Of course, both of her parents went there, to the Harvard Law School, after attending Columbia (Barack) and Princeton (Michelle).

The news was officially announced today in a statement from the White House.

Some people thought they knew Malia’s college decision before it was officially announced, since she’d been seen wearing a “Harvard Class of 2020” shirt on college signing day at Sidwell Friends School in Washington, DC. Apparently, the shirt is only given to students who have been accepted, according to The Tab.

Btw, Harvard gets approximately 37,000 applications, and it has a six percent admission rate, according to the Princeton Review, so congrats to Malia for getting in!

Malia had recently been seen touring six (of the eight) Ivy League schools, including Yale, Columbia, and Princeton. She had also checked out non-Ivy League schools, including Berkeley, Tufts, and NYU, said the New York Times. Some people assumed Malia would be going to NYU for film, since she’d been interning for TV shows the last couple years, Girls and Extant, but Harvard seemed to win her over most.

So, what do her parents think?

As far as Malia was concerned, her father said, “One piece of advice that I’ve given her is not to stress too much about having to get into one particular college. There are a lot of good colleges and universities out there, and it’s important, I think, for everybody here to understand you can find a college or university that gives you a great education.”

Michelle shared her husband’s sentiment. “The one thing I’ve been telling my daughters is that I don’t want them to choose a name,” she told Seventeen. “I don’t want them to think, ‘Oh I should go to these top schools.’ We live in a country where there are thousands of amazing universities. So, the question is: What’s going to work for you?”

Aww. Best. Parents. Ever.

As for the gap year Malia will take, no more details have been offered up yet. Oftentimes after high school, kids who take a gap year go travel, volunteer, or work, gathering life experience before classroom ones. And why not, right?! And though it’s been particularly popular with kids abroad, more American students are starting to take gap years, too, according to Time.

“I always tell people, the question of what you want to be when you grow up is one that you will eternally be answering,” Michelle Obama told Seventeen. “I’m still asking myself that question! What am I going to do when I leave here? How do I want to impact the world? I’ve gotten used to the fact that I don’t have to know. I’m always going to be discovering new parts of myself, and you’ll find that you will be too.”

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