Celebrating the Firsts
Blazing a new trail. It's a Courageous step clothed in excitement. But, also comes with challenges in order to successfully navigate all that lies before the first-generation student. No one else in the family has gone to college, so the legacy a first-gen student can potentially leave for the family is powerful. Yet, there is no one at home to offer advice or shared experiences. There is no flight plan.
Except at UTSA, we too are a family. We pull together to help these new students achieve academic success. Nearly half of our undergraduates are first-generation students — the first in their family to earn a degree — as are many members of our faculty and staff. So, we know our first-gen students need support, from the initial visit to UTSA to see how it meets their needs…all to way through, until the graduation walk is taken to receive that significant first diploma on behalf of their current and future families.
One of the ways we help our #FirstGenUTSA students is by partnering them with faculty and student mentors. Mentors can help with adaptation to new academic schedules, to understand financial aid resources and to discover productive study habits. UTSA is dedicated to student success. Take a moment to meet some of our first-generation students who excelled at UTSA. They bring assurance and encouragement that the challenges and work ahead are worth the ride.
MEET MORE UTSA FIRST-GENS
There are nearly 12,000 more first-gen students at UTSA who are inspiring, dedicated achievers.
Jacquelyn Reyes '16
Reyes' exploration of public administration at UTSA helped her find a love of community and public service.
Shon Brewington '17
Inspired by his psychology studies, Brewington is working to change education policy on the national level.
UTSA psychology professor Saw is helping first-gen students from underserved groups, particularly to succeed in STEM fields.
UTSA's First to Go and Graduate (F2G&G) provides face-to-face support to first-generation students by pairing them with first-generation faculty and peer mentors. Each mentee is placed in a group called a “familia”, or family where they identify, discuss and navigate the challenges and opportunities that come along with being the first in their families to complete college. They also learn how to apply for graduate school, conduct and present research, and utilize resources to excel in their degree programs.