2024 First-Gen student support summit

Save the date for the 2024 First-Gen Student Support Summit on Wednesday, April 3, 2024! The Summit, which will feature both virtual and in-person components, is an opportunity for participants to share best practices, network with one another, and cultivate a community of practice across the University.

The 2024 Summit will focus on intersectionality and the first-gen experience, and how intersecting social and political identities (race/ethnicity, gender, sexual orientation, class, disability, religion, age, nationality/immigration status, mental health, and "home" geography/location) relate to systems of oppression and discrimination. The Call for Proposals window is now open. We are encouraging a variety of proposals that will encourage participants to learn about how to help enhance their support for first-generation students who possess a diverse range of backgrounds, identities, and experiences. Topic areas may include the following: 

  • The importance of recognizing intersectionality in supporting student success
  • Exploring the unique challenges faced by first-generation students with intersecting identities
  • Best practices for creating inclusive campus environments that consider the intersectionality of first-generation students
  • The importance of cultural competence among educators and institutions to support first-generation students effectively
  • The intersectional aspects of mental health challenges faced by first-generation college students and strategies for support
  • The role of family dynamics and support systems in the academic journey of first-generation students
  • The impact of identity-based community and peer networks for first-generation students
  • Exploring policies and equity gaps for first-generation students from diverse racial and economic backgrounds

All topics should examine intersectionality through the lens of the first-gen student experience. Topics may include data insights, best practices, impactful programs, critical resources, promotion of student stories, and highlighting a need or potential growth opportunity. Click here to submit a proposalThe proposal submission window closes Friday, February 23, 2024.

Summit presentations will be hosted virtually through Zoom and streamed on the Whova platform. University Park participants will be invited to attend an in-person breakfast on the morning of April 3. Registration and additional Summit details will be released mid-spring semester.

Now in its third year, the First-Gen Student Support Summit brings together more than 400 Penn State faculty, staff, administrators, and graduate and undergraduate students each spring who share a commitment to first-generation student success. The event features a wide range of topics and amplifies first-generation student voices.

Details from the previous Summits can be found under the "Prior Events" section.