First Lady Michelle Obama delivers remarks during a ceremony honoring the 2017 School Counselor of the Year in the East Room of the White House, Jan. 6, 2017 in Washington. Getty Images

Michelle Obama officially leaves the White House Friday with her husband, departing President Barack Obama, and daughters, ending her eight-year tenure as first lady of the United States. While having ruled out her own shot at the presidency and having expressed a desire to return to a life of relative normalcy, she has hinted she will continue advocating on major social issues.

Michelle Obama, who was born Michelle LaVaughn Robinson and grew up on Chicago's troubled South Side, graduated Princeton University and went on to study law at Harvard. She met Barack Obama while the two were working at the Chicago law firm Sidley Austin LLP. The couple bonded over a mutual interest in African-American community relations and had their first child, Malia, in 1998 and youngest, Sasha, in 2001. Since her husband was first elected president in 2008, Michelle Obama has been a vocal supporter of minority rights, women's rights, LGBTQ rights, various health initiatives and poverty awareness.

As the first lady steps down from her role, International Business Times gathered 12 of her most memorable quotes:

On immigration and diversity in the U.S.

"If you or your parents are immigrants, know that you are part of a proud American tradition — the infusion of new cultures, talents and ideas, generation after generation, that has made us the greatest country on Earth."

On women's rights.

“No country can ever truly flourish if it stifles the potential of its women and deprives itself of the contributions of half its citizens.”

On engaging the youth.

"I want our young people to know they matter, that they belong. So don't be afraid — you hear me, young people? Don't be afraid. Be focused. Be determined. Be hopeful. Be empowered. Empower yourselves with a good education, then get out there and use that education to build a country worthy of your boundless promise. Lead by example, with hope. Never fear. And know that I will always be with you, rooting for you and working to support you for the rest of my life."

On the Islamic militant group Boko Haram's kidnapping of more than 200 schoolgirls from the Nigerian town of Chibok.

"In these girls, Barack and I see our own daughters. Their hopes and their dreams, and we can only imagine what their parents are feeling right now. Many of them may have been hesitant to send their daughters off to school, fearing that harm may come their way, but they took that risk because they believed in their daughters' promise and wanted to give them every opportunity to succeed."

On law enforcement discrimination against the African-American community.

"The realities are that, you know, as a black man, you know, Barack can get shot going to the gas station."

On being able to change the world.

“You may not always have a comfortable life and you will not always be able to solve all of the world’s problems at once but don’t ever underestimate the importance you can have, because history has shown us that courage can be contagious and hope can take on a life of its own.”

On handling criticism.

"When someone is cruel or acts like a bully, you don't stoop to their level. No, our motto is when they go low, we go high."

On being healthy.

"It's multifaceted — it's physical, it's internal, it's my diet, and my emotional state. It's all tied in together. Throughout my life, I've learned to make choices that make me happy and make sense for me. Even my husband is happier when I'm happy."

On accomplishing one's goals.

"One of the lessons that I grew up with was to always stay true to yourself and never let what somebody says distract you from your goals."

On her relationship with Barack Obama.

"One of the things that attracted me to Barack was his emotional honesty. Right off the bat, he said what he felt. There are no games with him — he is who he appears to be. I feel fortunate as a woman to have a husband who loves me and shows me in every way. So yes, I do know that. And now he'll know I know."

On success

"Success isn't about how much money you make. It's about the difference you make in people's lives."

On her future in community action.

“I will always be engaged in some way in public service and public life. The minute I left my corporate law firm to work for the city, I never looked back. I’ve always felt very alive using my gifts and talents to help other people. I sleep better at night. I’m happier.”