by brittany wescott '15
Catawba College is continuing its effort to strengthen programs that support the education of its first-generation college students. This is thanks to a $100,000 grant funded by the Walmart Foundation.
Catawba was one of 30 Council of Independent Colleges (CIC) member colleges and universities selected through a competitive application process to receive a 2010 CIC/Walmart College Success Award. The institution is now in the second year of grant period and is using its award to fund its NextGen Project. This project strives to build the cultural and social capital of first-generation students through increased training and development of faculty and staff who work with first generation students, as well as special outreach programs targeted to families of first-generation students.
One special offering afforded by the grant is a fully funded trip for first-generation students to travel to Washington, D.C. during the winter term following their first fall semester. Next Gen students who participated visited Washington area museums, historical sites, government offices and Catawba College alumni.
First-generation student Brittany Wescott '15 of Concord went on this year's trip to Washington and shares her experience through a blog and photographs.