Oglethorpe University is one of 50 institutions nationwide — and one of only two in Georgia — to receive the First Generation College Celebration Grant from the Center for First-Generation Student Success. This annual grant is awarded to colleges and universities to fund programming that will recognize, uplift and honor first-generation students, faculty, staff and alumni.
Funds from the grant will be allocated to weeklong programming that will provide resources to first-generation students, culminating in a community-wide celebration on Wednesday, Nov. 9 — the day after the nationally-observed First Generation College Student Day to avoid conflicting with Election Day.
Attendees can look forward to free food, supplies, giveaways and guest speakers, including Oglethorpe’s Vice President for Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Laura Renée Chandler, Ph.D.
“Even after this celebration ends, our support of first-generation students, faculty and staff does not” says Director of Career Development Lisa Conley, Ed.D., “Oglethorpe has always been a supportive place where you can be who you are — no matter your background.”
An application for the grant was co-authored by several OU departments, including Career Development, Global Education, Student Success, and Campus Life.
Since 2017, institutions, corporations, non-profits, and K-12 schools across the nation have celebrated First Generation College Student Day to honor first-generation students, faculty, staff and alumni. From special luncheons to important keynote events, these celebrations have only continued to grow in scope.
November 8 was selected as the date for the annual National First-Generation College Celebration to recognize the anniversary of the signing of the Higher Education Act of 1965, which helped bolster the educational resources of colleges and universities and provided much-needed financial assistance to low-income families. This landmark legislation opened the door for many students wishing to pursue higher education and could previously not afford it.
Stay tuned to OUConnect to stay up-to-date on Oglethorpe University’s first-gen events.