Celebrating the College Board’s First-Gen College Grads
Celebrating the College Board’s First-Gen College GradsAmber Briggs, Assistant Director, Office of the President
First-generation college students comprise just a small percentage of the U.S. college population; yet there are a disproportionate number of barriers that stand in the way of their success to and through college. Being the first in your family to navigate the world of higher education can be difficult and confusing. And research shows that first generation college students, on average, have significant financial need, are often underprepared for college-level work, and have lower graduation rates than their peers. While being “first-gen” comes with its challenges, first-generation college students are succeeding, and it’s time to change the narrative changes from emphasizing their barriers to highlighting their unique strengths and accomplishments.
The College Board is proud to support first-generation college students through our work. We are also proud to be a place where many first-generation college students come to work.
That’s why the College Board participated in Proof Point Day, a national movement that celebrates first-generation college students and brings together graduates, future first-gen students, and supporters. Together, these advocates can serve as vocal and visible #ProofPoints — for the thousands of kids who have yet to begin their journeys, and for the thousands that are on the journey and may feel alone.
This year, National Proof Point Day was held on May 27, 2016, and College Board offices across the country celebrated and honored first-gen colleagues.
Staff in the College Board’s New York office were able to celebrate the day in the First-Generation Conference Room, renamed in honor of first-gen students after College Board President and CEO David Coleman spoke earlier this year at the 2016 IvyG Conference. The conference room is an open space for all current and future first-generation college students to gather, work, and collaborate. Other College Board regional offices honored first-generation staff by hosting receptions and conversations, and wearing lots of green.