First Gen Awareness Programming
"First-Gen? Me Too!" is a first-generation awareness campaign launched on the Athens Campus with four main objectives:
Raise awareness of the large population of first-generation college students at Ohio University
Approximately one-third of our first-year class each year consists of first-generation students (no parent/guardian has earned a bachelor's degree). Unfortunately, most people underestimate the percentage of first-generation students on our campus.
Increase first-generation student sense of belonging
National literature indicates that first-generation students are more likely than continuing generation students to struggle with finding a sense of belonging on campus. The importance of a sense belonging in relation to student persistence is also well documented. An awareness campaign can communicate to first-gen students that they do belong at OHIO.
Increase first-generation student academic self-efficacy
It is well documented within national literature that first-generation students are likely to have lower levels of academic self-efficacy than their continuing generation peers. Our campaign will showcase successful students, faculty and staff who are first-generation to communicate the message, "I did it. You can too!"
Create a community of first-generation students, faculty and staff on our campus
Many first-generation students do not know they are first-generation students. Our awareness campaign can help them learn about and embrace this important piece of their identity. Additionally, it is difficult for first-gen students to pinpoint other first-gen students, faculty and staff on campus without being able to identify them visually. Our campaign will visually highlight the first-generation community in order to bring members together.
'First Gen? Me Too!' Includes
- Posters for students, faculty and staff —and departments— to display on doors and in meeting and open areas
- Door cards (similar to Safezone) which allow first-generation faculty and staff to identify themselves as first-gen to students or advocates
- T-shirts to wear around campus (or wherever). Want a shirt? email firstname.lastname@example.org
- OHIO First Scholars Advocates whom students can meet with to get questions answered
- Email signature graphic for students, faculty, and staff to use in their email programs
- First Gen Friday events (below)
Email Angela Lash to request First-Gen? Me Too! materials.
What is First-Gen Friday?
As a part of the First Gen? Me Too! awareness campaign, OHIO First Scholars promotes an event called First-Gen Friday on the first Friday of each month as a way to build community among our first-gen students, faculty, and staff. Being a first-generation college student is something worth celebrating and we're happy to plan the party!
How can you participate?
- Wear your First Gen? Me Too! T-shirt! Don't have one? Stop by the Allen Center in Baker 417 to get one!
- Stop by our First-Gen Friday event! (Schedule is below)
- Check your OHIO email for opportunities to win prizes!
- Follow @OhiouFirst on Twitter.