First Generation University Initiative

In 1984, Colorado State became the first university in the nation to offer scholarships specifically for first generation students. For decades, about 20-25 percent of students at CSU have been in the first generation of their families to earn college degrees. These first generation students are a testament to the power of a land-grant university to improve individual lives, communities – and the world – by providing access to excellent education for every student with the talent and motivation to earn it.

The First Generation University Initiative (FGUI) is a group of staff and faculty members who have volunteered to organize, collaborate across departments, develop strategies, brainstorm outreach opportunities, and provide support for all our First Generation college students. This group was initially formed after a message from Tony Frank asked faculty and staff to identify if they were First Generation college graduates.


To identify and involve faculty and staff who are First Generation college graduates and First Generation allies to support in the engagement and success of First Generation students at Colorado State University.


First Generation faculty, staff, and allies at Colorado State University will actively contribute to fostering an inclusive and welcoming climate for First Generation student success.

FGUI Committee

The FGUI advances student success through a committee with membership from across CSU colleges and divisions. If you are interested in joining a subcommittee or learning more about the FGUI, please contact us!

First-Gen Forward Logo
First Scholars Logo

Faculty & Staff Engagement and Mentoring

Creating a community of first generation faculty and allies to implement practices leading to student success


Develop and implement communication strategies to inform our campus about effective ways to engage, celebrate, and support our first generations students

Student Engagement & Events

Support campus partners in the development and implementation of materials, programs, activities, and events that promote first generation student success

First Generation Research, Data, and Strategies

Share research, data, and strategies that can inform our practice in closing the achievement gaps for first-generation students