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First-Generation College Student Resources


Student Success and Inclusion at Saint Xavier University supports first-generation students and alumni with their academic, career and support needs. In addition to the resources below, please feel free to access our Student Success Guide for more help or schedule an appointment with an Academic and Career Resource Advisor through Navigate.

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General Resources

You will find a number of general resources to help you prepare for career and educational opportunities as first-generation college student.

A list of terms is available on the First-Generation Glossary page.

The First-Generation Foundation connects first-generation college students to organizations and resources dedicated to helping first-generation students succeed.

College Greenlight hosts scholarships for first-generation and low-income college students.

The First-Generation Civil Rights Fellowship advances first-generation college students committed to social justice. FirstGEN is a ten-week summer program for undergraduate first-generation students passionate about pursuing careers in social justice.

The Field Guide for First-Generation College Students helps students embrace their status as a first-generation student to navigate the college application process.

The Center for First-Generation Student Success provides resources for individuals to better understand the first-generation student experience, research and data, and support strategies.

The First-Generation College Student Guide provides resources for navigating college including the admission process, applying for financial aid, and scholarship information for first-generation college students.

What to Know as a First-Generation College Student is a helpful article by U.S. News and World Report on how to navigate college as a first-generation college student.

Dartmouth University provides a helpful resource on Note-taking which may help first-generation college students effectively record and learn information from classes and lectures.

The Skills You Need website provides a helpful resource on Effective Reading which may help first-generation college students get the most out of their academic readings.

What I Have Learned as a First-Generation College Student is a TEDx Talk featuring the personal insights of a first-generation college student (3:49).

What It's Like to Be A First-Generation College Student is a YouTube video featuring three first-generation students discussing what the "first-gen" label means to them (2:01).

Michelle Obama's Inspiring Message to First-Generation Students is a YouTube video featuring words of encouragement and motivation to first-gen students from our former First Lady (and first-generation student) Michelle Obama (2:23).

We Persisted: Being a First-Generation College Student is a YouTube video featuring first-gen students sharing stories of persistence and self-acceptance (2:42).

First-Generation College Student Tips is a YouTube video featuring a first-gen senior sharing her top tips to help you through the experience of being a first-generation college student (10:31).

First in My Family: Supporting First-Generation College Students is a YouTube video featuring several first-generation college students speaking about their challenges, sources of support, and recommendations for policymakers (4:50).

Growth vs. Fixed Mindset is a short YouTube video explaining what is a Growth vs. Fixed mindset (2:19).

The Power of Belief -- Mindset and Success is a Tedx Talk featuring Eduardo Briceño discussing how mindset and belief are key to success (10:51).

Growth Mindset is a YouTube video discussing how mindset can hold you back or help you achieve greatness (2:09).

Developing a Growth Mindset is a Miniclip featuring tips on how students can switch on their growth mindset (4:51).

Online Guide for First-Generation College Students provides first-gen college students with the information and resources they need to get their college journeys started on the right foot.

College Infogeek is a website featuring useful posts and videos on exam preparation and study motivation.

Daily Writing Tip's Email Etiquette features tips on how to write professional and courteous emails.

Navigating College as a First-Gen Student is a YouTube video in which Daniela Padilla from the Early Academic Outreach Program (EAOP) at UC San Diego shares tips for first-generation college students, including navigating the transition from high school to college life, how to advocate for yourself, how to find community, and more (12:38).

How to Bounce Back from Failure is a YouTube video that addresses how to bounce back from various academic challenges and how to stay motivated (4:45).

How to Read a Syllabus is a YouTube video reviewing the different parts of a college syllabus (5:32).

Taking Advantage of College Resources is a YouTube video that talks about counseling options, student health services, fitness choices, academic health, and more (12:21).

Imposter Syndrome as a First Gen Low Income (FGLI) Student is a YouTube video discussing imposter syndrome as a FGLI student and how to stop it (9:23).

How students of color confront imposter syndrome is a TED talk in which Dena Simmons discusses how we might create a classroom that makes all students feel proud of who they are (10:20).

Don't Be Afraid to Fail Big, To Dream Big is a YouTube video in which Denzel Washington delivers an inspiring commencement speech about the necessity of failing in order to grow and achieve greatness (4:30).

Go HUNT Your Dream is a motivational YouTube video about the importance of persistence and chasing your dreams (4:37).

Job Search

Below you will find several job search websites that first-generation college students might find useful in conducting a job search.

Indeed is a worldwide employment-related search engine for job listings.

LinkedIn is a website used for professional networking and job searching.

Glassdoor provides information and reviews about companies and allows individuals to explore salaries for positions based on location.

CareerBuilder is a website used for job opportunities and career advice.

SimplyHired is a job search website that allows individuals to search for employment opportunities across the United States.

Saint Xavier University partnered with CareerSpring to provide our first-generation college students with career information and resources, a network of professional contacts across various industries, and access to employment opportunities.

Handshake is a website for finding internships and full-time employment for students and alumni.


Below you will find websites that connect first-generation college students with different scholarships and grants. provides scholarship and grant information for first-generation college students. provides First in Family Scholarships for first-generation college students.

Professional Organizations, Conferences and Networking

Schedule an appointment with an Academic and Career Resource Advisor to find out more about connecting with other first-generation college students and professionals through organizations, conferences and networking events.