The new 1GEN Student Success Program will kickoff with a meet and greet from 4 to 6 p.m. on Jan. 21 in the Student Life Classroom.
Students who have signed on with the program have been connected with a mentor and will meet with them for the first time if they have not already done so.
However, Mary Beth Strader, associate director of advising and student programs, said that students who show up but have not signed up for the program will still be accepted.
“We are not going to turn someone away. If there is a first generation student who is a senior and they want to come, then yeah, come.”
The event will feature Tamara Long, vice president for enrollment management, and Jordan Jones, associate director of financial counseling and student services, introducing the program to the students.
Afterward, students will be introduced to their mentors and will be able to step out into the Campus Center discuss topics such as academic and college life concerns, interests and backgrounds.
“Even if we don’t have the same interests, I want to be available,” Strader said. “If they have questions and they don’t know where to go where they can find an answer, they want someone to at least reply so they can help them figure it out. My goal as a mentor is to help that student ask the right questions, find the answers they need and be available for anything.”
According to its overview on myACU, the 1GEN program’s mission is to “help these students adjust to the college experience by offering a variety of opportunities and resources, from workshops to social activities.”
The program allows students to work as mentors, guiding first generation students from freshman to senior level.
Milka Weldemichile, senior social work major from Fort Worth, said her freshman year experience influenced her to become a mentor for this program because she was also a first-generation student.
“That example growing up opened up my mind to want to help those students that are in that phase of life and I was luckily blessed to have mentors in my life that have helped me get this far,” Weldemichile said. “And I think having a mentor or someone they can look up to motivate them to keep going is a big deal in college.”
Students can learn to get involved by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org for more information.