South Central College (SCC) will join in the National First-Generation College Celebration. SCC students, faculty and staff will have opportunities to learn more about what it means to be a first-generation college student and celebrate with games and prizes.

The celebration will take place at SCC’s North Mankato campus at the Café Corner from 11 a.m. – 1 p.m. and at the Faribault campus in the atrium from 12 p.m. – 1 p.m.

The first national First-Generation College Celebration Day occurred in 2017 when the nonprofit Council for Opportunity in Education (COE) encouraged institutions nationwide on or around November 8 to celebrate first-generation college students.

“First-generation students have repeatedly demonstrated that supporting and encouraging promising students, often low-income, whose parents never went to college, is one of the great investments our country can make,” said COE President Maureen Hoyler. “Their success stories are worth celebrating.”

COE selected November 8 to honor the anniversary of the signing of the Higher Education Act of 1965. This landmark legislation emerged as part of President Lyndon B. Johnson’s War on Poverty. It ushered in programs, particularly the Federal TRIO programs, which provide specialized support services to underrepresented students, including first-generation.

SCC’s TRIO program serves 140 students each year, two thirds of whom are first-generation. The support services make a difference in the success of students who may not have thought college was even a possibility for them. “I am so proud of myself and never knew I would be able to go to school one day,” said Farhiya Abidrahman, who in addition to being a first-generation student is also an immigrant and single mother.

Jess Dewar, who is also a single mother, has benefited from TRIO and the focus on student success at SCC. “If anyone is on the fence about going back to school, just come here and talk with someone. It’s very doable. This is not impossible. You’ll feel like you belong here. “I have not met one instructor or advisor who doesn’t want me to succeed,” she said. “They care.”

For more information the TRIO Student Support Services program at South Central College, visit www.southcentral.edu/TRIO.