National First-Generation College Student Celebration Day

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Albany, Georgia – For the first time, Albany Technical College will celebrate National First-Generation College Student Celebration Day on November 8, 2022, from 11 am -1 pm in the Kirkland Conference Center. November 8 was selected as the date for this annual event to honor the anniversary of the signing of the Higher Education Act of 1965.

Since 2017, institutions, corporations, and non-profits across the nation have celebrated first-generation students, faculty, staff, and alumni and the important contribution they make within their communities. Led by Senator Reverend Raphael Warnock (D-GA) and Senator Roger Marshall (R-KS), a bipartisan team of Senators helped steer S. Res. 437 to passage, helping to further solidify the importance of this day.

According to the Center for First-Generation Student Success (2022), a first-generation student is any student whose parent(s) did not complete a four-year degree. Organizations such as this realize that there are certain barriers that First-Gen students face that are different than that of a student whose parents attended college.

“As a first-generation student, I often felt lost and confused. I didn’t know anything about the college process and didn’t have anyone to ask. There were even times I felt as if I didn’t belong. We do not want any student at ATC to feel that way, and that is why we are celebrating and why we have created a First-Generation Mentoring Program to help our students navigate the college process,” said Lashea Dancer, Director of Student Wellness and one of the organizers of this event.

First-Generation students, alumni, faculty/staff, and potential students are invited to come out and listen to faculty, and community members discuss some of the challenges they faced and how they succeeded as first-gen students. Students will also participate in a team-building exercise, meet & eat lunch with the First-Generation Mentors, and listen to live music. The first 50 students will receive a First-Gen Swag Bag.

If anyone is interested in attending Albany Technical College as a First-Generation student or is a current First-Gen student and would like a Mentor, please contact Lashea Dancer at or 229-430-3614.