FORT SMITH, Ark. — Going back to university after that long summer break can be stressful especially if you are a first-generation student. 

First-generation students are students whose parents have not obtained a bachelor’s degree or higher. To help those students’ the University of Arkansas-Fort Smith hosts First Generation Friday on the first Friday of every month during the fall and spring semesters.  

“First to Go” is a way for students to meet with other students, staff, and faculty who are taking their first step into obtaining a higher education.  

Kim Okoniewski-Cloud with the Student Success and Retention Division says the event is also designed to show first-generation students they are fully supported. 

“They may not know how to properly studying for a college course,” said Okoniewski-Cloud. “They may not know how to time manage for college courses. Different things of that nature. But also knowing you are not alone with being a first-generation student where your parents didn’t go to college.” 

According to Okoniewski-Cloud, UAFS has a 53% first-generation student population.