Strong Support For First-Gen Students

~25%

Nearly a quarter of Carthage College undergraduate students are the first in their families to attend college.

First-gen students often don’t have access to the same information and support as students whose parents have earned bachelor’s degrees, so Carthage provides resources to help them navigate college and connect with other students, faculty, and staff. Carthage offers a strong support system for first-generation college students. Nearly a quarter of our undergraduate students are the first in their families to attend college.

No one first-gen student has the same story. While they may all fall into the same definition of “first-generation” their experiences and the diversity of their identities make each of them unique.

Carthage regularly holds special events to welcome first-generation students.

Hear from First-Gen Students and Staff

Juan Gomez-Solis '25

JUAN GÓMEZ-SOLIS ’25

“When I visited Carthage for the first time, the tour guides and professors welcomed me with open arms. They gave me suggestions on what parts of campus I should check out, and they told me which staff members to talk to should I have any questions. I recommend other first-generation students get involved in clubs and sports because they are great ways to integrate yourself into campus life.”

Abigail Davidson '25

Abigail Davidson ’25

“At Carthage, being a first-gen student doesn’t hold me back but gives me a superpower to use to my advantage in all aspects of life. I have experienced so much support and encouragement from the entire Carthage community — they will help me become the person I want to be. I feel like I belong here at Carthage, and I have space to grow as a student and individual.”

Lizeth Brito '23

LIZETH BRITO ’23

“I am so grateful to have been able to meet other first-generation students when I participated in First in the Family, the College Success Seminar, and 1G. I recommend finding and creating friendships with other first-gen students because I met some of my closest friends through FIF. The programs also helped me gain skills that set me apart from other students, which aided me in getting elected to leadership positions such as the vice president of 1G and Student Government.”

Esteban Machado '22

ESTEBAN MACHADO ’22

“Carthage’s First in the Family program helped so much when it came to transitioning to college life. I was afraid of starting college because it was going to be a whole new chapter in my life, and no one in my household could give me advice. During FIF pre-orientation, Carthage staff talked to the first-gen students about the many resources Carthage offers for free. While talking to the Carthage staff, I realized that they are here because they want us to succeed, even after we graduate. FIF gave me a boost of confidence and encouragement to succeed at Carthage.”

Marisol Martinez

Marisol Martinez, Student Success Advisor

“Being first-gen is and will continue to be a huge part of my identity. I have realized over the years as a professional that you never stop being first-gen. I have been first in many things outside of pursuing higher education — the first at being a professional, first to be respected, and first to be seen. I have been a part of conversations and been in spaces I would have never imagined. I am the first to have the power to make a change in my family and community. Being first-gen to me means my parents, community, and the generations to come will have a seat at the table. Being first means it’s the last time our voices go unheard.”


Resources for First Generation Students

First-time Freshman College Success Seminar

The College Success Seminar curriculum for first-time freshmen consists of one class a week for seven weeks (see your schedule for details), with your first-year advisor as the instructor.

1G Student Organization

1G is a student-led organization dedicated to developing a sense of community among first-generation students while providing a space to connect with and support each other.

Learn more about 1G on The Harbor


Contact Us

Kelly Smith
Assistant Dean for Student Success and Wellness
Health and Counseling Center
262-551-5725
ksmith17@0289568.com 

Carthage regularly holds special events to welcome first-generation students.
Carthage regularly holds special events to welcome first-generation students.
Carthage regularly holds special events to welcome first-generation students.
Carthage regularly holds special events to welcome first-generation students.
Carthage regularly holds special events to welcome first-generation students.
Carthage regularly holds special events to welcome first-generation students.