Austin College is dedicated to the success of first-generation college students.
Being FIRST at anything can be challenging. As the first in your family to attend college, you might be nervous, but we see First Generation students as bold, determined, trailblazers. You may not know this, but about 1 out of every 4 students at Austin College is First Gen. That means, their parents either did not attend college to complete a bachelor’s degree—or have completed that degree just recently. You are not alone. Regardless of the path that brought you to this point, you deserve to be here, we believe in you and are honored to be on this journey with you.
Austin College defines a first-generation student as:
Any student whose parent has not completed a bachelor's degree. We also recognize students whose parents may have returned to school and received their bachelor’s in the past two or three years (while the student was in high school) as first-generation students.
Austin College offers many resources and support that will help ease your transition and help you find success in college and beyond!
College can present a new set of terminology associated with higher education and with Austin College and learning what they all mean can be frustrating. We have included a glossary of terms that we hope will be useful before and after you begin college.
Faculty and Staff Profiles
University of Alabama in Huntsville (B.A.), Louisiana Tech University (M.A. & Ph.D.) I am originally from Huntsville, Alabama. I was raised by a single mother who did not obtain a college degree, but always stressed the importance of education. Growing up, I watched my mother struggle to make ends meet and find consistent work without… [Read More]
I began my 24th year in higher education at Austin College in July 2020 as the Director of Student Success and Transitions. I started my career in education working as an Admissions Counselor and then created what is now called the Diversity and Inclusion Office at a private liberal arts college in Nebraska. This position,… [Read More]
An avid hiker, gamer, and father of one, I grew up in the Beaumont area of Southeast Texas before going off to Tiffin, Ohio to attend Heidelberg University, a small liberal arts school much like Austin College. After graduating with a History degree and German minor, I enrolled in the Medieval Institute at Western Michigan… [Read More]
Born into a large family in rural western Kentucky, I was the first in my immediate family to go to college and only one of a handful of my extended family to do so. I attended Transylvania University in Lexington, Kentucky where I received a BA in Mathematics and Spanish. I then attended Indiana University… [Read More]
My name is Renee Countryman, and I am a first-generation college graduate. I am also a professor in the psychology department with a focus on neuroscience. My dad was a high school dropout, and my mom only earned her high school diploma. My dad learned how to be a mechanic in the Army, and my mom made… [Read More]
I grew up in a lower-middle-class family in the Oak Cliff area of south Dallas. No one in my family had attended college. I was extremely motivated to study at the best school I could get into, because I loved to learn, and I had had success as a student. I remember requesting admissions materials… [Read More]
I’m a first-generation college student who was born and raised in northeastern Ohio. Growing up as the son of a factory worker and an administrative assistant the importance of college was always emphasized, even though neither of my parents had attended themselves. They knew of it as a gateway to a “good job,” but that… [Read More]
I am the Associate Vice President of Student Affairs and Dean of Students at Austin College. I oversee Residence Life, Student Activities, Student Conduct, Food Services, Greek Life, Campus Center Operations, and Summer Conferences/Auxiliary Services. I worked as the Director of Student Life at Art Center College of Design in Pasadena, California for three years… [Read More]
I majored in Psychology and double minored in Education and Spanish while also being a part of the Austin Teacher Program. You may be wondering what any of these have to do with Public Affairs. I started as a Public Affairs Intern during my sophomore year and the various projects I’ve been assigned have propelled… [Read More]
Major: Physics – Minor: Math and Chemistry Bio: From a young age, I was drawn to the stars, and by the time I was a teenager, I knew that I wanted to study astronomy. Knowing how beautiful and mysterious the universe is, knowing that we are all made of stardust, knowing all humans are more… [Read More]