First-Generation College Celebration: November 8

October 30, 2020

First-Generation student Hector Cabrera is pictured.

First-Generation student Hector Cabrera is pictured.

The Council for Opportunity for Education (COE), in partnership with the Center for First-Generation Student Success, an initiative of NASPA and The Suder Foundation, is pleased to announce the continuation of the First-Generation College Celebration on November 8. Educational Opportunity Programs at Purdue University Northwest joins this movement in advancing a national narrative on first-generation student experiences and outcomes.

TRIO programs at PNW play a critical role in this history. Upward Bound is a legacy program. It was funded in the original funding band of 1965. The other four programs followed: Educational Talent Search-Hammond (1984), Student Support Services (1986), McNair Achievement Program (1988), and Educational Talent Search – Westville (1991). Collectively, the programs provide an educational pipeline of support from 6th grade through doctoral studies preparation. No other university offers this range of support in the state of Indiana. At PNW, approximately 56% of students are eligible for support from the TRIO college programs.

Why November 8?

This is the anniversary of the signing of the Higher Education Act (HEA) of 1965, which provided the original funding for TRIO programs and emerged out of President Lyndon B. Johnson’s War on Poverty. TRIO programs emerged to reduce the achievement gap of individuals from minority and low-income communities. In particular, TRIO programs address postsecondary access, retention, and completion for first-generation, low-income college students

Why First-Generation College?

TRIO programs introduced the language of first-generation in the 1980 reauthorization of the Higher Education Act. The identity of being the first to complete a bachelor’s degree is a significant one. It sets into action a positive effect on generational wealth and educational attainment attitudes. It’s a game changer!

Outcomes of TRIO programs at PNW for AY 2018-19

Information is based on submissions of the Annual Performance Report to the Department of Education.

Educational Talent Search – Hammond:

  • Students who are First-Generation and Low Income – 74%
  • Seniors who enrolled in a four-year University/College – 88%

Educational Talent Search – Westville:

  • Students who are First-Generation and Low Income – 83%
  • Seniors who enrolled in a four-year University/College – 60%

Upward Bound:

  • Students who are First-Generation and Low Income – 74%

Student Support Services

  • Students who are First-Generation and Low Income – 72%
  • Six Year Graduation Rate (2013-14 cohort) – 64%

McNair Achievement Program

  • Students who are First-Generation and Low Income – 73%
  • Graduate School Enrollment – 48%*

*Enrollment immediately after obtaining a bachelor’s degree. 

Join In The Celebration!

Spread your #PNWfirstgen pride and support as a first-gen advocate! Have fun with these Zoom virtual backgrounds and profile images. Whether you have your video on or off in the next meeting or class, show your pride and support for #PNWfirstgen.

Download Below

Advocate Background 1
Advocate Background 2
First Generation Background 1
First Generation Background 2
Advocate Profile 1
Advocate Profile 2
First Generation Profile 1
First Generation Profile 2

For additional information about these national events, visit NASPA’s Center for First-generation Student Success.  Learn more about TRIO programs at PNW.

Grethe Hystad, Ph.D.

Attention Faculty and Staff!

Let us know if you are first-generation college! EOP wants to honor and celebrate your success.


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