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Only twenty-seven percent complete a bachelor’s degree in four years – half the national average.
Twenty-seven percent come from households making $20,000 a year or less.
First-generation students often don’t know how the college application process works, how much time they have, or how to search for colleges.
First-gen students may be close to their parents, but in this area they can’t look to their parents for advice. These students desperately need mentors as well as money.
Many first-gen students feel out of place on college campuses – like everyone else knows what’s going on except them.
We coach, tutor, pray for, and encourage these students, and we provide scholarships to help with tuition, room and board, and other needs. And much of the money for these scholarships comes from our Giving Tuesday fundraising efforts.
“I am passionate about mentoring and supporting first-gen, because I was a first-gen student. If a student has the potential to succeed in college, I want to assist them and encourage them to attend college. I want to ensure they have tools and resources to be successful. I had a supportive family, but they did not understand the process and did not know how to assist me. I had to figure it out as I went. Not knowing the process or having the resources complicated things for me and made it more difficult than it was for the students who had parents that understood the process and had the resources.” – Kelly Estes, Director of Academic Support and Disability Services