First-Generation Students

Students whose parents have not graduated from a four-year college or university; the first in their immediate families to earn a bachelor's degree

Tips for Advising this Population

A first-generation college student has unique challenges that can affect academic performance. First-generation students may experience culture shock, financial difficulty, and/or family responsibilities which may interfere with academic responsibilities. Depression or anxiety can be an issue too. These students are twice as likely to drop out of college than non-first generation students before their second year.

While the University pays close attention to first-generation students, there is no specific program or service designated to serve the entire population. There are significant numbers of first-generation students in the President's Emerging Scholars program as well as the TRiO Student Support Services program in the College of Education and Human Development. 

Referring Students

Advisors might consult with staff in either the TRiO Student Support Services program or the President's Emerging Scholars program for ideas or resources on advising first-generation college students.