First Generation College Student Celebration

For the past three years the University of Portland, along with institutions across the nation, have celebrated National First Generation Day. Each year, November 8th is a day of celebration for all as a means to highlight UP first-generation students, faculty, and staff. Our goal is to showcase the important contributions all first generation community members have made here on the Bluff!

2020 Schedule of Events!


Thursday, Nov. 5th:

3:00 pm - 4:00 pm: (National First-Generation College Student Celebration. Open to ALL UP FGEN students. REGISTER HERE!

Join DJ Faro and other first-generation college student peers and champions for this National First-Generation College STUDENT Celebration on Thursday, November 5, 2020 from 3:00 pm - 4:00 pm. This will be a fun-filled hour of music, trivia, and prizes. Join forces with other FGEN students and show love to the first-gen community.

Friday, Nov. 6th:

Staff: 11am - 12:30pm: Joint virtual FGEN celebration. Open to all UP faculty, staff and community members interested in supporting FGEN! REGISTER HERE

This joint celebration will kick-off with opening remarks from Sarah E. Whitley, Ph.D., assistant vice president, Center for First-generation Student Success and Maureen Hoyler, J.D., president, Council for Opportunity in Education, as well as feature a panel discussion about the history of the first-generation student definition, utilizing an asset-based lens. You do not want to miss this virtual celebration!

Students: 2pm - 3pm: First FRIDAY! Workshop! "Preparing for Final Exams" Preparing for finals, academically and personally, can be a stressful task - especially with all learning currently taking place virtually.

Jeffrey White Sarina Saturn

  • Join Jeffrey White, SARC Learning Commons, and Dr. Sarina Saturn, Psychology faculty, as they discusses ways that can assist as you start to plan for finals. Both will help facilitate discussion around finals preparation, including use of the Learning Commons, self-care and mindfulness, and other strategies. Open to ALL current UP first generation college students. Register HERE or via Engage

Saturdays: Nov. 7th 1-2pm; Nov. 14th 5-6pm

Join Mellonie Mwawai, senior FGEN student, in an opportunity for conversation about FGEN.

“The goal of the upcoming meeting is to have a discussion with students and other folks who would be joining on what's like to be FGEN. We are planning to share our experiences as FGEN and learn more about other people's experiences as well. In addition, we are trying to find ways to advocate for FGEN students and letting them know that they are not alone and it's okay to ask for help too when necessary.” - Mellonie. Email for zoom link.

Monday, Nov. 9th:

9am - 10am FGEN Day Keynote Speaker

Bio: Rashne Jehangir

UP FGEN welcomes Rashné Jehangir, PhD.from the University of Minnesota, one of the leading national scholars on first generation student success, to offer our keynote address. Open to ALL members of the UP community. (REGISTRATION HERE Via Engage) Difficulties registering? Email

Thursday, Nov. 12th:

6pm - 7pm Re-Broadcast of Dr. Jehangir Keynote. (REGISTRATION HERE via Engage) Difficulties registering? Email

Friday, Nov. 13th:

9am - 2pm. The University of California has cordially invited ALL members of the UP community to join them for its First Generation Student Symposium. REGISTER HERE FOR SPECIFIC SESSIONS

UC First-Generation


Join the University of California for a virtual symposium on first-generation college students. The symposium honors the national First-Generation College Celebration and the 55th anniversary of the Higher Education Opportunity Act.

The group will explore four themes, including Asian American and Pacific Islander (API) first-generation students, first-gen populations in graduate schools, supporting first-gen students' career readiness, and a critical look at the evolution of higher education in times of unpredictable challenge and opportunity.