Welcome First Generation Students & Families!

Being the first or one of the first in a family to attend college is special and instills great pride within the student and family. We encourage students to remember that they have worked hard to get here and to make the most of this special time in their lives. We encourage parents/family to be proud and supportive of their students. At the University of Rochester we want to remind first generation college students* that anything and everything is possible.

*At the University of Rochester, a student is identified as a first-generation college student if neither parent/guardian earned a Bachelor’s degree.

For questions about this page, please contact Parent and Family Relations at urparents@rochester.edu or (585) 275-5415.

First Generation Open House Series: ResLife!



All students need support and guidance.
Here are some tips to help you “CLIMB UP” the academic ladder:


a major that’s the right fit, rather than something that sounds impressive or is what others expect of you.


how to prioritize school and manage your time, while also taking necessary mental breaks.


about support resources for underrepresented students like OMSA and the Kearns Center.


regularly with your advisor to know important academic requirements and deadlines, and to stay on track for graduation.


with fellow classmates and peers within your major.


the financial aid process and know the difference between loans, grants, and scholarships.


on campus by attending events and joining student organizations, clubs, and teams.


A college degree is a great accomplishment for any student! Here are some tips to help you better support your student.


This is a learning experience for both you and your student—you will be learning about this transition together.


change, as college is a time of growth and discovery, but remember that pursuing higher education does not mean your student will lose the values you taught them.


your student to get involved on campus by attending events and joining student organizations, in addition to utilizing campus resources when experiencing academic, social, or emotional difficulties.


your student may not be able to visit home or communicate on the telephone as much and they may not have the same amount of time to devote to family responsibilities as they did in the past.


care packages and send goodies from home when possible. Some examples include a special note from mom, dad, and other loved ones, student’s favorite cookies, family pictures, and keepsakes.


campus resources when you have questions. Parents Buzz (e-newsletter) and the UR Family Newsletter are full of information.


the college process, especially the financial aspects, and learn about the University of Rochester more generally. This will help you become more familiar with what your student is experiencing.



Advice from UR Campus Community

Encouraging quotes from anonymous students to their peers:

  • “Don't let distractions get in the way of your success.”
  • “It really is all worth it in the end.”
  • “Know when you need help, where you need help, how you need help, and then actively seek it out.”
  • “Don't be discouraged by students who come from different backgrounds.”
  • You were selected to attend this university because of what you could offer… you deserve this.”
  • “You CAN do college work. You have what it takes and there is a whole group of people here to walk alongside you.”
  • “Be yourself, do what you love NOT what you "should" do, and have FUN!”
  • “Connect. Connect with peers, especially those who are older. Learn from their experiences and reach out to them for guidance.”