Former first lady Michelle ObamaMichelle LeVaughn Robinson ObamaObama: Cummings showed us 'the importance of checks and balances' Poll shows Michelle Obama would lead in New Hampshire if she entered 2020 Democratic race Obamas' first Netflix project nominated for Critics' Choice Documentary Awards MORE on Monday sent a thank you message to her former Chicago high school after a new multimillion-dollar athletic complex was named in her honor.

Whitney Young Magnet High School dedicated the new $4.3 million Michelle Obama Athletic Complex on Monday after a year of construction, NBC Chicago reported. And Obama, a 1981 graduate of the school, sent along a video message for students.

"Whitney Young has played such a foundational role in my life," Obama said in the recording. "It's where I first started to branch outside my neighborhood and see the possibilities that lay right in front of me."


The complex includes football, lacrosse and soccer fields, as well as a running track, softball and baseball diamonds, batting cages, and spectator seating. 

It is a noted upgrade for students who used to have to commute via train to practice facilities or run on city streets, the outlet reported. 

Obama never played a sport when she was a student at the Chicago school but advocated for fitness and healthy lifestyles during her time in the White House.

She said the facility will provide an open space for Chicagoans to get together, since the space will be open for athletic teams, gym classes and West Loop residents.

"This is a facility for everybody," Obama said. "For athletes and non-athletes. For weekend warriors and fitness fanatics. For every student, every parent, every community member."