Students blazing their own educational path as the first in their family to attend college joined faculty with a shared educational history at the College of Life Sciences’ annual First-Generation Luncheon. Faculty from every department in the life sciences sat amongst students to build a supportive community and offer advice.
The purpose of the event was to acknowledge the potentially unique and difficult circumstances first-generation college students face and make them aware of the many university resources available to them.
While students with a college family history have previous experiences to draw upon when navigating university life, first-generation students are often left to figure things out on their own. Dr. Matt Bailey, assistant professor of biology and the keynote speaker for the event, shared his own experience. Bailey said that when he would go back home and talk with his parents he didn’t learn “the tricks of the trade.” He never heard, “Hey, you could do this when you want to get in [to a program] or have a better experience here.” Instead, it was: “How’s school?” Bailey then highlighted that although it can be scary, students don’t have to go through their time at BYU alone. He invited the students to let God lead them to the people who will give them the support they need.
Organizations including the Research and Writing Center, Women’s Services & Resources, Life Sciences Advisement, and more hosted tables where students could learn about the resources they provide. Dean Laura Bridgewater encouraged students to make use of the help available to them. “These resources are in place. They're just waiting for students to come and access them. So don't let yourself be the one who loses out because you didn't use a resource that's already available.”
University & College Resource Booths Present
BYU Off-Campus Housing
Sorensen Center for Moral & Ethical Leadership
Internship Office & Experiential Learning
Life Sciences Advisement
Life Sciences Student Council & Clubs
Women’s Services & Resources and SASAS
Research & Writing Center