Here's What Malia Obama Studied At School

It's common knowledge that the Obamas value education. Per Barack Obama Presidential Library, former President Barack Obama holds degrees from Columbia University and Harvard Law School, while former Lady Michelle Obama attended undergrad at Princeton University, as well as Harvard Law School. So when the couple's oldest daughter Malia Obama graduated from Sidwell Friends School in 2016, no one doubted she'd pick a top-tier college. Per PBS, Malia visited Brown, Yale, and the University of Pennsylvania (among others) before settling on Harvard. Although she ultimately chose her parents' alma mater, it wasn't due to their urging. "There are a lot of good colleges and universities out there. Just because it's not some name-brand, famous, fancy school doesn't mean that you're not going to get a great education there," Barack said during a 2016 Town Hall, where he spoke on college affordability (via Yahoo).

Reflecting on his daughter's high school graduation, Barack described Malia to the New York Times as a "capable, conscientious student who is ready to make her way independently in the world." And Malia demonstrated her independence by foregoing her dad's advice about Ivy League schools. Perhaps it was Harvard's reputation of protecting high-profile students that helped her choose the school. "The larger the institutional ego of the place, the more comfortable you can feel about the ability to cope with [being a first child] and still have as close to a normal experience as possible," presidential historian and author Gil Troy told the New York Times.

Malia Obama is passionate about filmmaking

In 2012, Michelle Obama told People that her daughter Malia Obama had "an interest in filmmaking." To garner experience in the entertainment industry, PBS reported that Malia worked as a production assistant for CBS's "Extant" in 2014. In 2015, she also interned with the HBO show "Girls." According to PBS, Malia opted to take a gap year once she decided on Harvard — and she spent her time traveling in South America and Indonesia. Barack and Michelle's eldest entered Harvard as a freshman in 2017 and graduated in 2021. Just like her parents, Malia excelled in her studies. Per Biography, she received the Thomas Temple Hoopes Prize for "excellent undergraduate work and excellence in the art of teaching."

During her time in undergrad, Malia majored in Visual and Environmental Studies, according to the Harvard department's website. This makes sense, given her interest in filming. Per Harvard, the college's Arts Film and Visual Studies Department offers courses in theory and analysis of film, as well as hands-on technical classes where students learn how to use cameras and editing equipment. 2021 proved to be a pivotal year for Malia, because not only did she graduate from Harvard at this time, but she was recruited as a writer for the TV series, "Hive." According to Harper's Bazaar, the series involves a Beyoncé-esque character. "Hive" is being produced for Amazon Prime as part of a content deal between the streaming service and actor Donald Glover.