Career Services launch “First to Finish” program to help first-generation students

Heather Crain, career development specialist in the Career and Retention Services office at Tulsa Community College (TCC) invites students, faculty and staff who are or were first-generation students to share their stories and problems with the service.

The Career Services are planning a “First to Finish” program with a goal to provide first-generation students with resources, connections and workshops.

When will you start the program and how long will it run?

We are starting “First to Finish” in August 2019. ”First to Finish” is a new initiative Career Services is adding to its regular programming.

What kind of workshops and other events are you planning for the program?

“First to Finish” is a program designed specifically for first-generation students. ”First to Finish” seeks to serve and support our first-generation students in the completion of their academic and career goals. Through workshops, focused resources, and network opportunities, we hope to empower first-generation students at TCC to identify and navigate their path to their educational and/or career goals.

Career Services will be hosting a workshop on Nov. 13 specifically for first-generation students.

 What challenges do the first generation college students have in comparison with others? How does TCC help to overcome it?

Research shows that first-generation students are more likely to drop out of college before completing a degree than non-first-generation students. 

I would say two of the main challenges are learning how to navigate through college and lack of support. Navigating the college process can be intimidating for any student and is especially daunting for first-generation students. Also, many first-generation students need a strong support system to help encourage them as they work toward their goal.

 Through “First to Finish”, we aim to provide students with the necessary tools to successfully navigate through the college process, stay on their path, and reach their educational and/or career goals. We also hope to create a sense of community and support by connecting students with faculty, staff, and other students who are first-generation. We have already received great support across TCC, with nearly 40 faculty and staff members volunteering to share their stories as a first-generation student.

 In Career Services, we are so excited about “First to Finish” and the opportunity to better serve first-generation students at TCC! For more information about “First to Finish,” contact Heather Crain, career development specialist at Career and Retention Services, located at Southeast Campus, (918) 595-7862, or www.tulsacc.edu/careerservices.