Michelle Obama heads to Iowa

First lady Michelle Obama will make her first commencement speech of the 2011 graduation season in Iowa.

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She is scheduled to speak at University of Northern Iowa on May 7.

It's hard to ignore the potential political implications — her husband is running for reelection next year, and Iowa is an important early voting state (even though President Obama is not expected to face a tough 2012 primary challenger).

But the state is bound to have good memories for the Obama family. Then-Sen. Obama won the caucuses in the 2008 Democratic primary, which gave his presidential campaign a critical boost.

In announcing her speaking schedule Friday, the White House noted that Michelle Obama's Iowa speech will mark "her first visit as First Lady to a state she came to know and love during the 2008 campaign."

Also on her commencement speaking schedule: Spelman College in Atlanta on May 15; West Point on May 20; Quantico Middle High School in Quantico, Va., on June 3.