Students who are the first in their families to attend college are important to America’s future.



  • Collegiate Supporters, Donors and Sponsors
  • Corporate Supporters, Donors and Sponsors
  • Organizational Supporters, Donors and Sponsors

The First Generation Foundation connects students to colleges and universities and to support organizations. Corporate and non-profit supporters and sponsors provide first-generation college students with social capital networks, college and career advice, tutoring, mentoring, scholarships and methods for financing higher education. Supporters representing first-generation, student friendly colleges and universities offer helpful resources and support packages to first-generation college students.

The First Generation Foundation acknowledges, and respects, organizations serving first-generation college students.  We invite organizations that value academic rigor and encourage the establishment of high expectations for students who are the first in their families to attend college to join us as supporters. Supporters are not required to donate, nor are they required, or expected, to purchase fee-based services.

Supporters are merely required to complete a supporter form.  Our volunteer staff checks the veracity of the information provided and verifies information prior to posting on the First Generation Foundation website.  Supporters will be asked to periodically, once per semester, update their content, and the same form is used for this as well.  Supporters can have information removed. The same form will be used for removal as well.

To update your information, use the Supporter Registration form.  Indicate your contact information, name, title, address, and URL, and share any comments you believe may be helpful to potential college students—or students in college—or even first-generation college graduates in the workplace.   We will verify the information, and once approved, will update our site.  The site will be marketed to members of the K-20 educational community as well as the business and government sectors.

The Foundation is run by volunteers who understand the power of education to make lives better, businesses more viable, and society a better place to live, work and raise a family.  Volunteers continuously replenish information, update resources, and market the site to schools and students.

Organizational supporters are welcome to donate to the First Generation Foundation, a 501 C (3).  Donations are not required to be listed as a supporter on the First Generation website, but full contact information is required.  In addition to donations, we offer fee-based services for corporations and colleges, corporate sponsors and non-profit associations–in exchange for donations.  Services include organizational change facilitation, presentations, special projects, consulting, coaching, and training regarding imperatives and initiatives that strengthen educational, workplace, and societal commitment to first-generation outreach.

Sources of revenue are used to offset direct service expenses—searching for new sources of information, updating the website portal, discarding outdated news, marketing, and community outreach.

Although vocational training is meritorious, the First Generation Foundation does not consider career preparatory instruction as an adequate substitute for an academically rigorous higher education experience—from neither the individual, nor workplace, nor societal frames of reference. Although we decline involvement with post-secondary educational institutions primarily organized for profit, we do encourage corporate foundations and for-profit businesses to become involved, donate, and or contract for fee-based services.

Colleges & University Supporters, Donors, and Sponsors

  • College Professors
  • Academic Advisors
  • Board of Trustees Members
  • Administrators and Staff
  • Transfer Institutions
  • Academically Rigorous (selective and competitive) institutions of higher learning
  • Advisory Members

The First Generation Foundation thanks Dr. Michael Thomson, President Cuyahoga Community College, West-Shore Campus for his generous donation.

Corporate Supporters, Donors, and Sponsors

  • First Generation College Student Workforce Recruitment (Internship)
  • First Generation College Graduate Workforce Recruitment
  • First Generation College Graduate Workforce Loyalty and Retention Programs

The First Generation Foundation thanks Mr. Michael Meissner, Partner, Squire, Sanders & Dempsey for the pro-bono legal work donated to the Foundation.

The First Generation Foundation thanks the Ridge Tool Corporation for its generous donation.

The First Generation Foundation thanks GO JO Inc., for its generous donation.


Reprinted From Inside Business, September/October 2011

One of the best predictors of long-term prosperity and growth for our region is educational attainment. An education that ends in high school is no longer enough.

College brings higher pay: $1,053 a week for the median bachelor’s degree holder last year, versus $638 for a high school graduate with no college, says the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. Last year’s unemployment rate was 4.9% for college grads versus 9.4% for those with no college (Wall Street Journal – 5/4/2012).

As a community, it is imperative that we raise the expectations of our young people and send them clear, consistent messages about educational achievement after high school graduation. But that won’t be easy, especially in predominantly poor or blue-collar communities where college, or more broadly, post-secondary education, has not been the norm. How do we help parents who didn’t go beyond high school graduation understand why it matters and how to support their children? What kind of school and community supports are necessary to help kids prepare for post-secondary education – beginning at birth and extending through the time they’re on campus?

According to a study by the Georgetown University Center on Education and the Workforce,   by 2018, 62% of all jobs will require a college education, and more than half will call for at least a bachelor’s degree, says Banjac.

A first generation college student often has a tougher time earning a college degree than one who comes from a family with college-educated parents, explains Banjac, who has a Ph.D. in education and is the first in her family to earn a college degree.  The reasons are varied:  the family may lack the background to provide the support system needed; or they may not value education as much.

Organizational Supporters, Donors and Sponsors 

Directed student service in focus areas of academic preparation, connections and financial support  

  • Academic Counseling
  • Academic Tutoring
  • Mentoring
  • Financial scholarship
  • FAFSA assistance


Way to Go, Carolina Firsts. The First Generation Foundation thanks you for your hard work on behalf of First Generation UNC students!

Carolina Firsts is a student organization tailored to assist first generation college students transition into the university lifestyle. Carolina Firsts is an organization meant for students and is also run by students to help close the discrepancy gap. 1 in 5 undergraduate students. The Carolina Firsts Executive Board serves as a guide to those who do not have the familial background when it comes to all things University. We strive to not only be a friend, but a resource that provides first gens: a safe space to ask questions, the opportunity to meet others who dealing with the same issues, and strengthen first generation students’ life skills that they may or may not have learned already. Our motto for the board is, “I may be the first, but I won’t be the last. Being first means I am open to infinite opportunities, there are no setbacks.”

The First Generation Foundation thanks for its support of first-generation students.

Early Career Marketplace

The First Generation Foundation provides fee-based, consulting, coaching, and training services to corporate sponsors, colleges, and associations.  To fund the work of the Foundation, the organization offer fee-based service and accept donations. We refer students to supporters—academically rigorous colleges and universities, corporate sponsors and organizations serving and supporting first-generation college students.

The First Generation Foundation thanks the Midwest Sociological Society for featuring the First Generation Foundation in its publication.