Supporting First-Generation Students - Quick Reads

Banks-Santilli, Linda. “Feet on campus, heart at home: first-generation college students struggle with divided identities.” The Conversation, June 2, 2015.

Banks-Santilli is an education professor who has researched the distinctive psychological challenges faced by first-generation college students.  Here she reviews some of those challenges and how schools can better support these students.

“College Is A 4-Year-Long Balancing Act For First-Generation Students.” WAMC Northeast Public Radio, November 2, 2016.

In this NPR story originally aired on “All Things Considered,” 2016 Emory graduate Tyler Lattimore talks about his experiences as a first-generation student, offering encouragement and advice to another first-generation student who’s starting at university. Through the above link, you can listen to the 5-minute broadcast, read a summary of the conversation, or read the full transcript.

Collins, Donald Earl. “Why Making College Free Isn’t Enough for First-Generation Students.” The Atlantic, September 5, 2016.

Sharing from his own experiences as a first-generation college student, Collins describes the financial burdens and other personal and academic challenges that first-generation students must face as they learn to navigate the world of higher education.

Pappano, Laura. “First-Generation Students Unite.” The New York Times, April 8, 2015.

Pappano explores the experiences and perspectives of several first-generation college students.  She particularly attends to the challenges of being at an elite school and to how student networking and other steps can help to mitigate those challenges.

Zinshteyn, Mikhail.  “How to Help First-Generation Students Succeed,” in The Atlantic, March 13, 2016.

Research shows that mentoring programs, as well as other ways of demystifying campus culture, can improve retention and success rates for first-generation college students.  This article reviews that research and includes links to further data.