Established 1885

The Washburn Review

Established 1885

The Washburn Review

Established 1885

The Washburn Review

Washburn recognizes first-generation students on their journey to success

Located in the Bradbury Thompson Alumni Center, the first official First-Generation College Celebration Day was held. Kansas Governor, Laura Kelly, declared Nov. 8 as the day for first-gen students to be recognized. The proclamation paper symbolizes recognition for first generation students and their future careers.

“Today we stand on the opportunity of a brighter future for our nation. The future where education knows no bounds, where every student, regardless of background, can make further progress,” said Antonio Martinez, Washburn Student Government President.

Martinez is also a first generation college student and is involved in We Are F1rst.

“My dad is actually an immigrant that came over when he was 10 to the United States from Mexico and so education is a big deal for my parents,” Martinez said.

After Martinez finished his speech, Eric Grospitch, vice president for student life, made his way to the podium. Grospitch started his speech by introducing himself and telling the audience that he is also a first generation student. He talked about his association with the We Are F1srt organization and explained the importance of having first-gen students on campus.

Grospitch’s role is to help students find connections on campus through organizations and other opportunities. He emphasized that students can come to him for anything.

“Whether it be academic questions and concerns, whether it be life and what’s happening for them, counseling, student health, all of those things we work with and get them connected,” Grospitch said.

Grospitch supervises the counseling student health career services and other student resources across campus. This includes him being a part of the first-gen organization in some way.

First-gen students can find ways to not lose sight of their goal by going to an advisor. Jenny Lieurance, First-Generation specialist and lecturer supports the students throughout college.

“I serve as kind of the point person for first generation initiatives and just programming and supporting our students,” Lieurance said.

She mentioned that she goes over techniques and study habits with her students.

“There’s not one path and so I really try to work with them as individuals, and then the different pathways and backgrounds that they come from,” Lieurance said.

Edited by Sydney Peterson, Cheyenne Hittle and LeSha’ Davis

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