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Office of Undergraduate Education

First-Generation & Limited Income Student Initiatives


As part of the Office of Undergraduate Education’s Academic Success and Advising unit, First-Generation & Limited Income Student Initiatives collaborates with diverse campus and community partners to provide support through co-curricular programming for first-generation students. The department was created to build community, strengthen well-being, develop leadership, cultivate academic success, and foster retention and graduation among Georgia Tech’s first-generation and limited income students. In addition, First-Generation & Limited Income Student Initiatives works to:

  • Raise awareness of the needs and experiences of first-generation college students
  • Connect first-generation college students with their peers, faculty, and staff with the goal of building community.

What is a First-Generation Student?

A student is defined as first generation if neither parent has earned a bachelor’s degree (or equivalent) at a four-year college or university in the U.S. More specifically, students are first-generation if both parents have less than a bachelor’s degree (or equivalent) OR one parent has less than a bachelor’s degree (or equivalent) and the education level of the second parent is unknown or missing.

Signature programs

First-Gen Jackets Peer Mentoring Program

The goal of the program is to assist first-generation students who seek one-on-one support and guidance throughout their first year.

First-Generation College Celebration Week

A week of events, during the month of November, that celebrate the identity and experiences of first-generation students.

First-Generation College Institute (FGCI)

FGCI is a state-wide, summer initiative at Georgia Tech designed to expand Georgia Tech’s existing PreK-12 STEM programs.

GT F1RST iGniTe track

A track designed for specifically for First-Generation students in the Summer First-Year iGniTe program.

First-Generation Recognition Ceremony

A graduation ceremony celebrating the accomplishments of our first-generation graduating seniors and their journey to graduation.

Student Voices

“When First Gen Student Initiatives became an official branch of Georgia Tech’s Office of Undergraduate Education near the end of my sophomore year, I felt instantly that the first-generation student identity was being legitimized and recognized by Georgia Tech and it made me more proud of the identity. Additionally, the office helped revive First-Gen @GT the student org that was incredibly influential in my first year experience (but went inactive during Covid-19.)”

Nabojeet Das

President, First-Gen Student Organization

“During my first year, I sensed a small presence from the first-generation community but was still connected with First-Generation Student Initiatives through programs such as their peer mentorship and celebration week! Now, as a second year, I can definitely notice the progress with opportunities that enhance career development through the shadow program, and even helping restore the First-Gen student organization that fosters student community building and long-lasting relationships.” 

Janet Arvizu-Garcia

Executive Director of Membership, First-Gen Student Organization

“I am a 3rd year student here at Georgia Tech. I just want to take this time to thank Dr. Troy for all the work she’s been doing for 1st gen students like me. Ever since I met her last year, I have been exposed to so many opportunities such as internships, scholarships, and even networking with big companies like Microsoft.”

Aboubacar Barrie

Peer Mentor , First-Gen Jackets


Dr. Charmaine Troy

Dr. Charmaine Troy is Georgia Tech’s Associate Director of First-Generation Student Initiatives. She is responsible for the continued expansion of services to first-generation students, embedding these services within the fabric of the Institute. 


Phone number: 404-894-5704

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