Saturday, April 30, 2016


This paper is designed to identify and break the social stereotypes of first generation college students. Many media outlets identify first generation students to be less successful, and many times blame it on some sort of racial aspect. In reality, first generation students have a unique set of difficulties that hinder their college success. This paper identifies some, but not all, complications many first generation students deal with, as there are too many to name. By identifying the complications, the attempt to break the stereotypes is made by also providing solutions. Through research, it was noted that first generation students are more at risk to fail and those who do not fail may have lower grade point averages. Though the implications of failure are there, solutions to the problems were found. So the question, are first generation college students more likely to fail, is answered. Yes they are, but not because of they are inferior to continuing generation colleges students, but because they find themselves in a unique situation that can keep them from moving forward.

Works Cited
Balemian, Kara, and Jing Feng. "First Generation Students: College Aspirations, Preparedness      and Challenges." 19 July 2014. Web
Banks-Santilli, Linda. "First-Generation College Students And Their Pursuit Of The American     Dream." Journal Of Case Studies In Education 5.(2014): ERIC. Web. 30 Apr. 2016.
Blackwell, Edith, and Patrice Juliet Pinder. "What Are The Motivational Factors Of First-            Generation Minority College Students Who Overcome Their Family Histories To Pursue      Higher Education?." College Student Journal 48.1 (2014): 45-56. ERIC. Web. 30 Apr.       2016.
Glink, Ilyce. “Top 10 cheapest U.S. cities to rent an apartment” CBS July 20, 2013. Web.
Longmire-Avital, Buffie, and CHERREL MILLER-DYCE. "Factors Related To Perceived            Status In The Campus Community For First Generation Students At An Hbcu." College          Student Journal 49.3 (2015): 375-386. Academic Search Premier. Web. 30 Apr. 2016.
Mehta, Sanjay S., John J. Newbold, and Matthew A. O'Rourke. "Why Do First-Generation         Students Fail?." College Student Journal 45.1 (2011): 20-35. ERIC. Web. 30 Apr. 2016.
Mimura, Yoko, et al. "Financial Information Source, Knowledge, And Practices Of College            Students From Diverse Backgrounds." Journal Of Financial Counseling And Planning    26.1 (2015): 63-78. ERIC. Web. 30 Apr. 2016.
Petty, Tanjula. "Motivating First-Generation Students To Academic Success And College            Completion." College Student Journal 48.2 (2014): 257-264. Academic Search Premier.           Web. 30 Apr. 2016.
Smith, Nicole. “First Generation College Students” PowerPoint.
Shultz, Judith J. Andrews. "How Am I Going to Pay for That?!: First-Generation University       Students and Their Financial Concerns." ProQuest LLC (2013). ERIC. Web. 30 Apr. 2016.
Tate, Kevin A., et al. "An Exploration Of First-Generation College Students' Career          Development Beliefs And Experiences." Journal Of Career Development 42.4 (2015):      294-310. ERIC. Web. 30 Apr. 2016.
Trevino, Naomi Noel, and Stacie Craft DeFreitas. "The Relationship Between Intrinsic                             Motivation And Academic Achievement For First Generation Latino College Students."             Social Psychology Of Education: An International Journal 17.2 (2014): 293-306. ERIC.    Web. 30 Apr. 2016. 

Literature Review #5

Title: Why Do First-Generation Students Fail?

Authors: Mehta, Sanjay S.Newbold, John J.O'Rourke, Matthew A.

Mehta, Sanjay S., John J. Newbold, and Matthew A. O'Rourke. "Why Do First-Generation Students Fail?." College Student Journal 45.1 (2011): 20-35. ERIC. Web. 30 Apr. 2016.

After looking at all my sources, I came to realize that this article was the most important in my research. It pointed me to more resourceful information and as well gave me guidance to search for other terms.

With simple statements like “first generation students were found to have significantly lower family incomes and different sources of college funding than CGS families. Over 71 % of first generation students reported family incomes of less than $60,000 compared to only 42% of CGS”(7) Mehta et. al made it easy of me to make arguments. They presented hard facts that were backed by research.

According to their research, 21% of first generation students made more than $15,000, compared to the 12% of CGS (Appendix 1). Here I was able to find stats on the income they make compared to non FGS. Overall they made my work a lot easier.

In their research they cite Vincent Tinto many times, and even though he does not focus mostly on FGS, his work is very resourceful to the work needed for FGS.

Monday, April 25, 2016


Because the title of the paper will be "Are First Generation College Students More Likely to Fail?" I feel that saying I am arguing for something is not accurate. Rather, I am looking at the research that has already happened and making a decision based on my observations. As of right now, I see that there is a higher chance for them to fail, but not I want to highlight why that is a reality and how we can combat that. I guess in somewhat I argue that they are more likely to fail, but I want find the solutions. This research paper is not meant to highlight failure, but rather how to fix the issue that is present among FGS.

Sunday, April 24, 2016


Its tough to pin point on "chief case" for my subject. All of the studies I find take mass quantities to compare statistics with the non-FGS. In one article that I found, there is a case study that involves a young female by the name of  Katelyn Bennis who was applying to college. In an interview done, she said it was her mother pulling her back. Linda Banks-Santilli writes in her article "First-generation college students and their pursuit of the American dream" about Bennis' struggles to decide whether going to school or helping her family was the best decision in he young life. In this case, the parents both struggled with an alcohol addiction and both were smokers. It was obvious that the parents were a bit worried about their lives while the young one in the family was away. Bennis went on to explain how moving to her school in Boston was tough, but she knew that this was what she had to do in order to make it in life, and eventually give back to her family.

Of course there are many more different case studies, each dealing with something different. More these will be outlined in the paper, hoping to find a similarity with all of them that can come to the conclusion of how they deal with the obstacles.


So this is a little tricky. The title is "Why are first generation college students more likely to fail?", but with the process of explaining the why, I also want to get into the details of how to make it not so for them to fail. Many term thrown around in articles is social-economic-status (SES) by Longmire-vital and Miller-Dyce. It normal to see that most of the FGS come from lower levels of the table. Another aspect I want to get over is the statistics that follow FGS. Historically, FGS tend to not perform as well as those who were already are non-FGS. "FGCS often do not perform as well academically as, and persist to graduation at lower rates than, their peers who have more familial context for the college-going experience" (Tate et al. 295). Statistics say it to be true, but what they do not show is the extra life these students may have outside the college classroom. At the end of this research, I want to be able to say it was focused on career development and equal access to education, not the negatives of being a FGS.


The visual above represents what many believe to be what is necessary to let a FGS succeed. It is imperative that a students feels wanted/welcomed. That is why recruitment and selection is important. If a FGS is going to pick a university, it should be the one that he feels most comfortable with. This may be the first time he or she is away from home, and the last thing that students needs is homesickness.

Orientation is self explanatory as to why it is important, getting to know where you are. College success course and advising go hand in hand. An EOF program like the one at Rutgers requires the students to go meet with a counselor that genuinely cares. This allows for the students to feel as if there is someone here who cares about their wellbeing and knows about their academic progress.

Peer mentorship is more a thing that the students needs to accept. Many times younger people dislike going to people of the same age for guidance in more important matters. And towards the end of the circle, we see the ongoing communication and student success program. The reality with FGS is that they can do it, but they sometimes need an extra push accompanied by support.

Literature Review #4


Authors: Buffie Longmire-AvitalCherrel Miller-Dyce


Longmire-Avital, Buffie, and CHERREL MILLER-DYCE. "Factors Related To Perceived Status In The Campus Community For First Generation Students At An Hbcu." College Student Journal 49.3 (2015): 375-386. Academic Search Premier.

This article was interesting in such a way that it only analyzed FGS at a Historically Black College/University (HBCU). After going more in depth, I noticed that this article can help me, but not as much as others that I have found. The reason being is that it focus's too much on the comparison of a HBCU versus a predominately white institution (PWI). While there are somethings that can use from the study, many things are comparing it to a PWI.

A big focus in the study was the pricing of a HBCU vs a PWI. As stated by Longmire-Avital and Miller-Dyce, "The maintenance of an economic preference action plan in higher education admissions criteria for selecting students will continue to contribute to the creation of a student population that truly reflects the socioeconomic diversity within all racial groups in America" (384). This can go back to the prior topics of privatization. Because the price of an education is constantly rising, HBCU must also raise the prices in order to be able to provide the staff with a competitive pay. It seems that regardless of foundations, pricing seems to be an issue everywhere, and this can be overwhelming for FGS money tends to be an issue.

Many schools now preach an idea that there is no discrimination on their campuses, and that all students feel at home while attending the schools. The idea of feeling at home can be easily taken away when there is a split among students (FGS vs non-FGS). Longmire-Avital and Miller Dyce state that, "Overall there was a relationship between self-esteem dimensions and perceived community status for both groups[FGS, non-FGS]; however the specific dimensions differed depending on whether or not it was an FGS or a non-FGS" (381). It seems that students tend to have different views of themselves when coming from different backgrounds, when in reality they should all see themselves as students. Yes its true that the means that some had to go through to get to a institution was different, but at the end of the day, graduation is the common goal.

Both authors come from Elon university. Longmire-Avital is a psychology professor, while Miller-Dyce is a social justice advocate. Both seem very passionate about uplifting marginalized communities. Both have Ph.D's.