His parents, Mr. Barack Obama Sr. and Mrs. Ann Dunham, were first met in a Russian language class at the University of Hawaii at Manoa, , where his father was a foreign student on scholarship. Then, they married in Wailuku on Maui on February 2, 1961.
Obama attended local Indonesian-language schools: Santo Fransiskus Asisi (St. Francis of Assisi) Catholic School and Besuki Public School. During his time in Indonesia, Obama’s step-father taught him to be resilient and gave him “a pretty hardheaded assessment of how the world works.
After high school, Obama moved to LA in 1979 to attend Occidental College.
In Feb 1981, Obama made his first public speech, calling for Occidental to participate in the disinvestment from South Africa in response to that nation’s policy of apartheid.
In mid-1981, Obama traveled to Indonesia to visit his mother and half-sister Maya, and visited the families of college friends in Pakistan and India for three weeks.
Later in 1981, he transferred as a junior to Columbia College, Columbia University, in New York City, where he majored in political science with a specialty in international relations and in English literature and lived off-campus on West 109th Street.
Two years after graduating from Columbia, Obama was hired in Chicago as director of the Developing Communities Project. He worked there as a community organizer from June 1985 to May 1988.
Obama entered Harvard Law School in the fall of 1988. He was selected as an editor of the Harvard Law Review at the end of his first year, president of the journal in his second year, and research assistant to the constitutional scholar Laurence Tribe while at Harvard for two years.