Press Statement
Hillary Rodham Clinton
Secretary of State
Washington, DC
February 27, 2012


I am delighted to be able to send greetings to all of you – our future leaders, and I hope our future diplomats – and welcome you to the State Department during Black History Month. I know many of you have traveled a long way to be here today. Thank you for enlivening and enriching our celebration.

I’m sure the events of the past year across the Middle East have caught your attention—they certainly have caught ours. We see people – especially young people – across the region calling on their governments to be more open, more accountable, and more responsive. We’re busy supporting them as they work to achieve their aspirations.

Beyond the Middle East and North Africa, we’re working to make the American people safer and promote our interests – reducing the threat of nuclear weapons, fighting climate change, promoting Internet freedom, and solving so many other pressing problems.

We’re not only reaching out to governments, but we’re extending our diplomacy to individuals and communities by using new technology like Facebook and Twitter. But there’s much more to do, and that’s where you come in. If we’re going to solve the most pressing problems of our day, we have to tap into your experiences and energy. So keep being ambassadors for your ideals; keep asking questions about our country and our world; and most importantly, consider lending your skills and abilities to the State Department when you graduate. Log on to our websites, follow what we’re doing, and when you graduate, give us a try, because we sure can use you. Thank you.