NAU hosts inaugural First Generation Southwest Symposium

People interested in mentoring and supporting first-generation college students can learn the best ways to help at the First Generation Southwest Symposium Sept. 27-28 at the DuBois Center at Northern Arizona University. Attendees will hear from first-generation students, discuss their own experiences and insights and help find creative solutions to challenges these students face.

Presentations will include information on the transition to college, working on non-cognitive skills, engaging with students beyond the classroom, finding mentors and other skills that will help first generation students succeed.

Sonja Ardoin, a first-generation college student and now an assistant professor of student affairs administration at Appalachian State University, will be the keynote speaker. Her research focuses on social class identity in higher education, college access and success, leadership and career strategies in student affairs.

Registration for the symposium closes Sept. 20. For more information, visit the symposium’s website or email

Tallie Valverde