*A lucky group of Tennessee high school students were encouraged by the president of the United States at their senior graduation Monday. Some cried, some laughed, some contemplated, and some just marveled.

He told the smiling group of seniors, “You inspire me, that’s why I’m here.”

Students who are typically labeled at-risk and poor and who are currently facing a crisis (the flood) left the alma mater with a memory unlike many others.

“You’ve always been underdogs,” the president told the cheering Booker T. Washington High School graduates, arrayed in bright green and yellow mortar boards and gowns. “Nobody’s handed you a thing. But that also means that whatever you accomplish in your life, you’ll have earned it.”

Audience members not only included the families of the 150 graduates, but also local and top politicians.

He also used the trip to visit with families in flooded areas as well as share a bit of information about education in struggling communities like theirs.

Watch President Obama speak to the the graduating class of Booker T. Washington High School in Memphis:

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