The thought of heading off to college makes most teens feel excited, anxious and maybe a little scared. But first-generation students—those whose parents didn’t attend college—face a slew of other emotions as they prepare to step foot on college campuses across the country.
“It’s scary,” said Janet Gallardo, a senior at Whitney Young and future first-generation college student. “You won’t have anyone to tell you what it’s like.”
A few of the burdens these students face are balancing significant work and home responsibilities, financial challenges and a grueling workload that high schools in lower socioeconomic areas may not have prepared them for.