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Support for First-Generation Students Important to UCM

President Chuck Ambrose sent the following letter to campus yesterday, a message that includes important information for the UCM community:

Dear Campus Community,

Did you know that Wednesday, Nov. 8 is National First-Generation Day? At UCM, 46 percent of our 2017 freshman class identifies as a first-generation student. First-generation students are trailblazers by being the first in their family to attend and graduate from college but also face unique challenges. Here are some ways you can support first-generation students be the first in the family to finish at UCM as faculty and staff:

- Be clear and consistent in your communication with students. They are still learning the hidden language of college.

- Direct students to the Learning Commons for tutoring or study skills assistance. First-generation students often struggle with time management and academic study skills. The Learning Commons has staff that can help. The Learning Commons is located in JCK Library 3160 and can be contacted by phone at 660-543-8972.

- Tell students about resources and assist them when they are reaching out to get help. Many first-generation students see themselves as failures if they are required to ask for help.

- Be a mentor or direct students toward our mentoring program in the Mentoring Advocate and Peer Support (MAPS) office that provides students with guidance and assistance in school and in life. MAPS is located in Dockery 212 and can be contacted by phone at 660-543-4156.

- Encourage students to get involved and help them find specific clubs that will benefit them. Students are often overwhelmed by the organizations, but feeling a sense of belonging can help first-generation students graduate. Identify yourself! If you are a first-generation student yourself, incorporate your first-generation experiences into classroom discussions or your daily interactions.

Thank you for all you do to serve UCM and your continued contributions to our students' success. Additionally, we would like to compile a list of all faculty and staff who were first-generation students. If you were a first-generation student, please let us know by replying to this email.

Joining you in service,

Chuck Ambrose

For more information:
Contact Jeff Murphy at or call 4640