Students walking on North Campus.

First-Generation College Students

If you are the first in your family to attend college or grad school, St. Thomas provides resources to support you, including our Proud To Be First program. From navigating the application process and scholarship opportunities to the transition to college and your academic success, St. Thomas has a team here to help you along the way. We are proud to have many first-generation students at St. Thomas as part of our campus community.

St. Thomas is recognized as a First-Gen Forward Institution by the Center for First-Generation Student Success. One of only 200 institutions with this designation, it recognizes our commitment to first-generation student success.

Resources Supporting First-Generation College Students

Dougherty Family College

Opened in 2017, Dougherty Family College is a two-year college program for inspired students who want to obtain a four-year college degree and face financial or social obstacles on the way to their goal. (Best for: undergrads)

Ciresi Walburn Leadership Fellows

This cohort program is designed to address barriers to success facing Black male students with high financial need, with a preference to first-generation college students. It includes scholarship aid as well as mentorship, leadership development, and other supports. (Best for: undergrads)

First-Generation Law Student Association

The First-Generation Law Student Association's mission is simple yet incredibly important: Be a conduit for communicating the specific needs of first-generation law students at St. Thomas; and provide programming to address those needs. (Best for: Law School students)

Linkages Mentor Program

Peer mentoring program designed to support underrepresented students, including students of color, first-generations students and students demonstrating significant financial need. (Best for: undergrads)

Office for Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion

Provides leadership for building a more diverse, welcoming and inclusive community at St. Thomas. (Best for: undergrads, grad students, faculty, staff)

Proud to be First

St. Thomas program designed to help our first-generation students in their transition to college. (Best for: undergrads)

REAL Program

Provides a five-week summer academic and co-curricular orientation for incoming underrepresented first-year students; a program from Student Diversity & Inclusion Services (SDIS). (Best for: undergrads)

Scholarships for Future Students

Multiple scholarship opportunities including the Dease Scholarship, a full-tuition scholarship for underrepresented students, including those who are first-generation. (Best for: undergrads)

ThreeSixty Journalism

Inspires and teaches diverse Minnesota high school students to use multimedia storytelling to share the stores of their lives and communities. (Best for: high school students)