Academic Advisor, Premajor Studies Program
Communications major with a minor in Business Administration, 2006
What does being first-gen mean to you?
It means being brave and embarking on an unknown path with determination and resilience.
What challenges/barriers have you faced or overcome during college?
Understanding financial aid, student loans, and all the policies and documents connected to getting a degree
Getting connected to resources on campus
Overcoming impostor syndrome
Working a lot while trying to keep up with school work and extra-curricular activities
What resource(s) or support helped you to be successful?
My advisors and professors helped me navigate the requirements of my degree and difficult life situations that occurred while I was in school.
The writing center helped me improve my writing so that I could write better papers in less time. I felt very inadequate in writing which caused me a lot of anxiety until I used the writing center.
Counseling services and support groups helped me process some of the stresses of college and life.
My friends, campus activities, and volunteering helped me feel useful and not alone.
What advice would you give to someone else who is also first-gen?
Try many different resources (writing center, tutors, math support, counseling services, campus ministry, advisors, etc) on campus and determine which ones help you succeed most. Time is limited in college, so exploring and maximizing those resources can be a huge help. You deserve support! You are working so hard for this degree and making it easier on yourself by getting support is normal and good. Also, believe in yourself. Your advisors, professors, RAs, friends, and family all believe in you and want to help you succeed!