At USC, we define first-generation students as those whose parents do not have four-year degrees. Even if you have older siblings who are currently attending or have graduated from college, you are considered part of the first generation to enroll in, and eventually complete, college. At USC, approximately 23 percent of the total undergraduate population comprises first-generation students.

We are proud to have you here at USC. We have many resources and support services to help you navigate your college experience.

Check out our video about what it’s like to be a first generation student at the University of Southern California.

First-Generation Welcome Sessions: Summer 2022
We are excited to be back on campus for summer orientation! We will be hosting a session for first-generation students at all on-campus orientation events for first-year and transfer students. We strongly encourage all new first-generation students to attend one of these sessions as part of their orientation experience. We will introduce helpful resources at USC and create opportunities for students to connect with their first-generation peers.

First-Generation Peer Mentorship Program: 2022-2023
Please check back in summer 2022 to sign up for our peer mentorship program.

Academic Year Programming
The First-Generation Plus Success Center hosts workshops and events for the USC community during the academic year. Follow FG+SC on Instagram to learn more about events and resources.

USC’s First-Generation Student Leadership Program consists of current USC students who are also in the first generation of their families to attend and eventually graduate from college. These leaders are a great resource for providing their insight, advice and perspective for navigating university life as a first-generation college student. To learn more about our leaders or schedule an appointment to chat with them online, visit our First Generation Student Leaders page.

Jessica Frey Nielsen
Executive Director, Student Development & Visitor Relations

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Nahid Razavi
Assistant Dean, Student Development Programs

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Aylin Solis
Graduate Assistant, Student Development Programs

Would you like to share information with the USC First-Generation community through the newsletter? Email and we will share your content on an upcoming newsletter.

Our team is pleased to offer student panels and sessions for prospective student groups who are in the first generation of their family to attend college.

If your group is interested in planning a session with us, please email our office at with the following information:

  • Name of the school or community organization
  • Name of main contact for your group
  • 3-4 preferred date and time options (in Pacific Time) for a session
  • Any requests for topics to be covered

Please note, our sessions focus on the first-generation identity and cover topics such as the transition from high school to college, how to prepare for college, etc. Please visit our colleagues in the Office of Admission if you would like to learn more about the admission process.