What a surprise 155 seniors at Booker T. Washington High School in Memphis got today. For their hard work, they received a visit from President Obama, who delivered their commencement address.

The President congratulated the students, along with their families and friends, for being successful and striving for the best against all odds…

“We are here today because every single one of you stood up and said, ‘Yes, we can. Yes, we can learn. Yes, we can succeed.’ You decided that you weren’t going to be defined by where you came from, but by where you want to go,” said President Obama.

The President made his speech personal by highlighting several of the students individually, which caused a few students to shed tears of joy. “Each of you has a unique story to tell,” said President Obama. “Each of you knows what it took for you to get here.”

President Obama ended up as the keynote speaker after Booker T. Washington took first place in the White House Race to the Top Commencement Challenge.