First-generation college students (like muah) face many challenges. Since first-generation students have parents who did not attend college, or high school in some instances, they are far less knowledgeable about the “ins and outs” of college: preparedness, financial aid, acclimation, etc. Because of these challenges, many first-generation college students are at a higher risk of not completing their degree or they choose to attend school while working full-time.
I came across a great organization today, Downtown College Prep (DCP), located in San Jose, California. An extraordinary organization that assists first-generation college students by assuring they are ready for college. Their website is filled with best practice information as well as practical illustrations of the great work they do.
Oganizations such as DCP help first-generation students both before and during college. This in itself goes a long way in mitigating the differences between first-generation and non-first generation college students.
DCP provides a great model for any academic institution aiming to increase their recruitment and retainment of Latino first-generation college students.
First-generation college student, Miguel Corona, doctorate hooding in 2009.