Media Relations

President Obama at American University

President Barack Obama delivered an address on immigration reform at American University, Thursday, July 1. The event, which was by White House invitation only, took place in the atrium of the new School of International Service building.

Watch the speech in its entirety below and read the transcript.

View photos on Facebook.

Labeling America’s immigration system “broken,” President Barack Obama called for comprehensive reform during a landmark speech July 1 at American University’s School of International Service.

As sunlight streamed through the walls of windows in the gleaming new SIS building, Obama praised America’s long and proud tradition of welcoming immigrants while challenging the country to “shape a system that reflects our values as a nation of laws and a nation of immigrants.”

“Being an American is not a matter of blood or birth,” Obama told the crowd of 250 in the SIS atrium. “It’s a matter of faith, of shared fidelity to the ideas and values that we hold so dear. That’s what makes us unique. That’s what makes us strong. Anybody can help us write the next great chapter in our history.”

New York mayor Michael Bloomberg and activist Al Sharpton were among the politicians, government officials, and AU administrators, professors, staff, and students who witnessed the speech in person.

Read More

President Obama Addresses Immigration Policy at American University

This div will be replaced

President Obama delivers an address on immigration policy at American University's School of International Service.

“I believe we can appeal not to people’s fears but to their hopes, to their highest ideals, because that’s who we are as Americans.”


-President Barack Obama