Keene State College joins program to help first-generation students
Keene State recently announced it is now a College Partner in the “I’m First” program, which is an online community founded by the Center for Student Opportunity to support students who are the first in their family to attend college.
More than 40 percent of first-year students are first-generation students at Keene State.
“So it’s online tools for students and their families, and they are able to get online and chat with other first-generation students,” Huot said. “It’s essentially a resource, a tool kit that has been put together for first-generation students.”
The program is also a resource for college administrators, such as Margaret Richmond, Keene State’s admissions director, and Kristin Sweeney, director of TRIO, who say they are excited to start working with the program.
As director of TRIO, Sweeney helps students access federal programs that could help them pay for college or university.
Being keyed into the challenges these first-generation students face helps the administrators connect the students with the resources they need, she said. But a lot of times it’s just being there to answer questions and concerns because the terrain is unfamiliar to the student and their parents.
Huot herself is a first-generation student.
She said that growing up in Manchester as one of seven children, her parents worked hard to make sure she and her siblings went to college, which continues to have a lasting positive impact on her life.