First-Generation College Celebration

First-generation students, we’re talking to you! Nov. 8 is your day — National First Generation College Student Celebration Day, to be exact — and we’re joining colleges all around the country to celebrate your success.

Here at SLCC, the celebration lasts all month long!


Join Us November 5 & 6 for the National First-Gen Virtual Celebrations Events!

For the past four years institutions from across the nation including SLCC, celebrated first-generation students, faculty, and staff on November 8 and highlighted the important contributions made within the campus communities. Explore this page to see how we celebrate and recognize our SLCC first-gen students, staff and faculty on campus.

Enthusiastically we invite you to register for these two national First-Generation Celebration events hosted in part by COE:

National First-Generation College Student Celebration
Thursday, November 5 from 4:00 to 5:00 p.m.

This is an opportunity for first-gen college students and recent graduates to generate energy and renew pride before National First-Generation College Celebration Day. With entertainment via COE's DJ Faro, this fun hour of music, trivia, and prizes encourages students to engage on social media using hashtag #CelebrateFirstGen2020.

Register your first-generation students here

Joint Virtual First-Generation College Celebration
Friday, November 6 from 12:00 to 1:00 p.m.

This celebration features opening remarks from COE President Maureen Hoyler and Sarah E. Whitley, assistant vice president, Center for First-generation Student Success. Hear a panel discussion about the history of the first-generation student definition, utilizing an asset-based lens.

Register here

If you were a first-generation student, I also encourage you to share your story online. When posting on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, or LinkedIn, be sure to include #CelebrateFirstGen and tag @FirstgenCenter @COETalk and @SLCC_TRIO.

This year’s event features our very own SLCC first-gen students and inaugural First-Gen Fellows cohort documenting their life and higher education experiences expressed through the use of story and digital media and presented in a digital and participatory media—a digital story – a short, first-person, video narrative created by combining recorded voice, still and moving images, sounds and music.

Our SLCC first-gen students have developed and worked on their personal digital stories throughout fall semester and will now be ready to showcase their reflection and narratives virtually online during the week of the First-Gen Celebration.

First-Gen Digital Stories Virtual Exhibit and Showcase

Sign-Up Here

First-Gen Fellows Program

Sign-up or Nominate a First-Gen Fellow Here

First-Gen Fellows must be a first-generation college student enrolled at Salt Lake Community College. Undocumented students (with and without DACA) are eligible to be nominated.

Sign-up or Nominate a Mentor Here

Mentors must identify as first-generation to participate in this initiative. Mentors must be a current Salt Lake Community College Faculty or Staff.


November 8, 2020 is the 55th anniversary of the Higher Education Act, and SLCC is joining institutions across the country in celebrating the presence and experiences of first-generation college students, faculty, and staff on campus.

November 8th was selected as the date for the annual National First-Generation College Celebration to honor the anniversary of the signing of the Higher Education Act of 1965. The Higher Education Act (“HEA”) emerged out of President Lyndon B. Johnson’s War on Poverty. Much like other hallmark legislation of that era, such as the Civil Rights Act of 1964 and the Voting Rights Act of 1965, HEA was intended to help level a playing field that for too long had been weighed against Americans from minority and low-income backgrounds.

In 2017, the Council for Opportunity in Education (COE) and the Center for First-generation Student Success launched the inaugural First-Generation College Celebration! Given the overwhelming success of this event in 2017 and 2018, COE and the Center now partner to make this celebration an annual event.

On November 8, 2019, COE encourage colleges and universities to celebrate the success of first-generation college students, faculty, and staff on your campus in any and every way possible.

First-generation students are defined as: students from families where their biological parents did not complete a four-year college degree.

This definition comes from the Center for First Generation Student Success

Get involved! Please take our survey.

Take the Survey Here

We are asking for your assistance, please, help us identify and capture WHO our first-generation college students and/or graduates are here at SLCC.

We will also use your responses to garner support for this celebration event(s) by reaching out to you for future assistance in our celebration planning and promotional campaigns.

Visit the NASPA First-Generation Student Success initiative webpage for more information.