First-Generation College Celebration 11-08-2019

November 8, 2019

1965 Act made way for low-income, first-generation students to break chain of poverty, become first in their families to earn a college degree


Highland Heights, KY. – November 08, 2019 – In 2017, the Council for Opportunity in Education (COE), in partnership with the Center for First-Generation Student Success, an initiative of NASPA and The Suder Foundation, celebrated the inaugural First-Generation College Celebration on November 8 with an event on Capitol Hill. The 2019 celebration will occur again on November 8. College and university campuses around the nation will hold rallies, panel discussions, listening sessions, celebrations, and more in recognition of their first-generation students, staff, and faculty – in other words, the first in their family to pursue higher education. Institutions can use #CelebrateFirstGen to share their events and join in conversations with colleagues and students. This date marks the 54th anniversary of the signing of the 1965 Higher Education Act (HEA), which has helped millions of first-generation, low-income/under-resourced students persist to degree completion.  

Kentucky Campus Compact is a proud supporter of first-generation college students through our Kentucky College Coaches (KCC) secondary and post-secondary programs. Meredith Dean, Director of College Access stated “The KCC program directly targets first-generation college students because they face more and greater obstacles to post-secondary access.” She went on to talk about how the students served are more than just first- generation. “Many core students [mentees] are also minority and low-SES.” Of the close to 3,000 students served by the program last academic year, 20% of those students will be the first in their family to pursue higher education.

“Celebrating the accomplishments of our first-generation students across the country not only sheds light upon their vast abilities but fosters an environment of asset-based approaches to serving this student population. First-Generation College Celebration creates an intentional conversation about this important population, recognizes institutional commitment to fostering student success, and creates a platform for campus collaborations” said Sarah E. Whitley, Ph.D., senior director, Center for First-generation Student Success.

To learn more about the 2019 First-Generation College Celebration visit, To learn more about how the Kentucky College Coaches Program can help your students access an institution of higher education, contact emob-Zrerqvgu.Qrna {at} xlpbzcnpg(.)bet-26" href="mailto:%4D%65%72%65%64%69%74%68%2E%44%65%61%6E%40%6B%79%63%6F%6D%70%61%63%74%2E%6F%72%67">Meredith.Dean {at} kycompact(.)org


About Kentucky Campus Compact: Kentucky Campus Compact (KyCC) is a statewide coalition of Kentucky college and university presidents and their institutions, both public and private, committed to college access, college success, and community impact. KyCC was created in 2005 and opened its doors for operation in January 2006. KyCC is a chapter of the national Campus Compact organization, which boasts close to 1,100 members since its founding in 1985. KyCC is housed on the campus of Northern Kentucky University. NKU is the fiscal agent for KyCC and provides facilities, payroll, accounting, grants, human resource and IT services. Visit

About the Council for Opportunity in Education (COE): COE is a nonprofit organization, established in 1981, dedicated to furthering the expansion of college opportunities for low-income, first-generation students, and students with disabilities. Through its numerous membership services, the Council works in conjunction with colleges, universities, and agencies that host Federal TRIO Programs that help approximately 828,000 low-income students and students with disabilities each year receive college access and retention services.

About the Center for First-generation Student Success: The Center for First-Generation Student Success is an initiative of NASPA and The Suder Foundation, serves as the premier source of evidence-based practice, professional development, and knowledge creation for the higher education community while advancing innovation and advocacy for the success of first-generation college students.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *