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Wednesday, June 7, 2017

First-Gen Profs to Inspire First-Gen Students

Many college campuses offer some type of academic and social support to students who are among the first in their families to enroll in higher education. The University of California is trying a different tack with a new program involving faculty.

The program, dubbed First-Gen Faculty, encourages professors who were first-generation students themselves to open up about their experiences with their classes. Those who sign up to participate will wear special shirts or buttons during the first week of school next fall so students can identify them.

According to a report in Inside Higher Ed, an estimated 800 faculty from nine campuses are expected to take part. About 42% of UC students are the first in their families to enroll in a four-year school.

“The idea is that first-generation students can seek out professors with similar experiences as role models or mentors,” the report explained. “Faculty members can share advice and alert students to essential campus services.”

The program will also provide training about first-generation issues to UC faculty and staff.

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