Welcome! We’re so glad you’ve joined us at UMass Amherst.
Approximately 25% of UMass students are among the first in their family to attend college. If you are the first in your own family, you are joining the many students, faculty, and staff on campus who are first-generation. You are a valuable member of our community and we are dedicated to helping you build your network, succeed academically, and share your voice.
It is our commitment to first-generation students that we provide a range of services and opportunities that support their progress from their initial semester through graduation. We encourage students to embrace their ability to achieve high levels of academic and career success as they make connections and develop a sense of belonging on campus.
A first-generation college student is one whose parent or guardian has not attained a bachelor's degree. In each entering class, about 25 percent of the population is first generation. We are proud to report that we also have many staff and faculty who were the first in their family to earn a bachelor’s degree, creating a sizable first-generation community on our campus.
Undergraduate Student Success and the First Generation Experience at UMass
Undergraduate Student Success is committed to celebrating and supporting the first-generation student population at UMass Amherst. An important part of our community’s history, first-generation students are defined here as those who do not have a parent or guardian who attained a four-year degree. These students come to our campus with a wealth of important perspective, life experience, and skill. We encourage students to embrace their ability to achieve high levels of academic success as they make connections and develop a sense of belonging on campus.
Our unit offers programming, services, and resources designed to cultivate academic and co-curricular success. Support for first-generation students is a shared mission across our campus and we collaborate extensively with the academic colleges and departments as well as Student Affairs & Campus Life. We continue to grow and improve our initiatives, consulting with students on campus and utilizing success data to drive meaningful, planful action.
Want to learn more about the nationwide movement to support first generation college student success? Here are some great resources: