– First-Generation College Student –
First-generation college students face challenges applying to and graduating from college, but college prep and support can help narrow the opportunity gap.
What if it’s an associate degree? What if the parent doesn’t participate in the student’s life regularly?
A first-generation college student (FGCS) is someone whose family has not traditionally gone to college. Many FGCS are from low-income families with little access to higher education.
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What Does a First-Generation College Student Mean?
Researchers discovered that the percentage of pupils classified as “first generation” might range from 22 to 77 percent of the sample size using information from a 2002 study of 7,300 students.
This probably applies to all colleges and universities, with many students possibly falling into the FGCS category.
A student is deemed to be an FGCS under the Higher Education Act, which affects eligibility for federal aid programs; however, this provision only applies to parents who frequently reside with the student.
The Common Application, which requests information about parents’ educational backgrounds, allows colleges to identify first-generation students (according to their standards).
Tips for First-Generation College Students
Many FGCS don’t have the financial and familial support that allows students from wealthy homes to finish college.
Furthermore, even though they have the same degree of high school preparation and accomplishment as their non-FGCS peers, first-generation students sometimes lack confidence in their skills to succeed.
1. Leverage Free Resources
School counselors can assist students in expressing their professional interests, helping them plan their course schedules to align with their college goals, and keeping them on top of matters like entrance examinations, applications, and financial aid.
However, many first-generation kids attend high schools where guidance counselors are overworked or uninformed of fresh initiatives and possibilities that can help students from poor backgrounds.
2. Take Advantage of Educational Opportunity Programs
Many graduating high school seniors have the choice of attending college, but those who are low-income, Black, and/or Hispanic are much less likely to do so.
For low-income and first-generation students, Educational Opportunity Programs (EOPs), which many universities provide, can assist in bridging the gap between high school and college.
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3. Learn the Campus’s Unspoken Rules
There are unwritten campus regulations that govern how first-generation students can connect with instructors and take advantage of other opportunities, so it’s not only academics that might hinder them.
Students from households who don’t attend college are less likely to be familiar with these standards.
FAQs on what is a First-Generation College Student
Faqs on first-generation college students
1. What qualifies someone as a first-generation college student?
A first-gen student is a nickname for a first-generation college student someone who grew up in a home where both parents did not attend a four year college, where one parent has an AA only, or where one or both parents attempted some college but did not finish it.
2. Are you a first-generation college student if your sibling is in college?
Yes. Being a first-gen student means that your parent(s) did not complete a 4-year college or university degree, regardless of other family member’s level of education.
siblings and family members who attended college may be a great resource as you navigate your college journey!
3. What is considered first-gen?
According to the Merriam-Webster dictionary, there are two possible meanings of the adjective first generation.
First generation can refer to a person born in the U.S. to immigrant parents or a naturalized American citizen. Both types of people are considered to be U.S. citizens.
4. Who is a first-generation college graduate?
A first-generation college graduate refers to a person who has completed at least a bachelor’s degree but does not have a parent who has completed at least a bachelor’s degree.
A second-generation college graduate has at least one parent who has completed at least a bachelor’s degree.
5. Are you a first-generation college student if your grandparents went to college?
For example, your parent(s) could have some college experience but did not earn a degree from a four-year college or university.
Your grandparents, aunts/uncles and siblings could also have degrees, and you would still qualify as first generation.
Some first-generation students come from low-income households.
6. What is a second-generation college student?
The term “second-generation student” is used to refer to students whose parents or guardians earned at least one baccalaureate degree.
7. Does the first generation include siblings?
Your grandparents, aunts/uncles and siblings could also have degrees, and you would still qualify as first generation. Some first-generation students come from low-income households.
8. Are you a first-generation college student if your parents have associates?
Being a first-gen student means that your parent(s) did not complete a 4-year college or university degree, regardless of other family member’s level of education.
9. Are you the first in your immediate family to earn a bachelor’s degree?
Being a first-generation college student means that you are the first person in your immediate family to attend college. In other words, neither of your parents has a college degree.
10. What do first and second-generation mean?
The first generation refers to those who are foreign born. The second generation refers to those with at least one foreign-born parent.
The third-and-higher generation includes those with two U.S. native parents.
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