Experiences of First-Generation, Low-Income Students

At “1vyG”, the largest conference for first-generation and low-income (FLI) students in the nation, Princeton hosted its fifth annual meeting. The conference aims to build a supportive community for FLI students to show what can and is possible. Some key ideas were spoken of:

  • You are as equal and worthy as other students. They may have more, traveled more, done more … but you’re both in the same university, the same classroom. You’re equal peers.
  • You are capable of great things. What you have right now doesn’t correlate with what you will have or who you will be. All you need to get moving is a start and end point.
  • Universities and colleges are becoming aware of your needs. For example, Princeton leaves dining halls open during winter break for students who cannot travel home.

You may be shooting for Princeton, you may not. The message is clear either way. The world needs students like you, who come from low-income backgrounds. You may be the first to attend and graduate college, having to figure out FAFSA and all that other jazz. But, at the end of the day, going through all that only demonstrates how capable and strong you are. Go for it.