What is the UI First-Generation Task Force?
NASPA Center for First-Generation Student Success Blog, October 2019
"Ways to make a difference: Building awareness and celebrating first-generation students"
NASPA Center for First-Generation Student Success Blog, October 2018
"Grassroots Mobilization of Faculty and Staff to Support and Celebrate First-Generation Students"
Leadership and Membership
- Tanya Uden-Holman, Associate Provost for Undergraduate Education and Dean of the University College, and Wayne Jacobson, Director of Assessment, are co-directors of the First-Generation Task Force.
- Angela Lamb, Assistant Director of Academic Support and Retention, serves as the group's functional lead and leads the 1stGen@Iowa Initiative.
Current members of the First-Generation Task Force include:
|Amy Korthank||CLAS Administration|
|Amy Baumgartner||Residence Education|
|Andrew Beckett||University College|
|Angela Ward||Distance and Online Education|
|Angela Lamb||University College|
|Angi McKie||Career Center|
|Anna Flaming||Office of Teaching, Learning & Technology Center for Teaching|
|Benjamin Hassman||Department of Rhetoric|
|Blaine Greteman||Department of English|
|Bret Gothe||Student Life|
|Carolyn Colvin||Teaching & Learning|
|Chandler Easley||Student Athlete Academic Services|
|Cody Pritchard||Center for Diversity & Enrichment|
|Cynthia Seyfer||Student Financial Aid|
|Dana Thomann||Department of Rhetoric|
|David Johnson||Office of the Registrar|
|Diane Crosby||Academic Advising Center|
|Erin Barnes||Rehabilitation & Counselor Education|
|Gabriela Rivera||Undergraduate Program Office, Tippie College of Business|
|Jamarco Clark||Office of the Dean of Students|
|James Ankrum||Biomedical Engineering|
|Jane Dorman||Engineering Administration|
|Jeffrey Hart||Department of Finance|
|Jenay Solomon||Library Administration|
|Karen Torno Fashimpaur||CLAS Administration|
|Katherine McCullough||Diversity Equity & Inclusion|
|Kathryn Stoltenberg||Office of the Registrar|
|Lauren Garcia||College of Pharmacy|
|Linda Varvel||CCOM Administration|
|Lisa Ingram||Academic Advising Center|
|Maggy Tomova||Department of Mathematics|
|Margaret Chorazy||Public Health Administration|
|Martha Kirby||CLAS Administration|
|Mary Aldugom||Psychological and Brain Sciences|
|Matt Anson||Office of Assessment|
|Matthew Miller||Center for Diversity & Enrichment|
|Mirra Anson||University College|
|Patrick Rossmann||Student Health and Wellness|
|Sabrina Tapps-Fee||Office of Admissions|
|Sara Nasrollahian Mojarad||Office of Teaching, Learning & Technology Center for Teaching|
|Shaun Vecera||Psychological and Brain Sciences|
|Tabitha Wiggins||Center for Diversity & Enrichment|
|Tanya Uden-Holman||Provost Administration|
|Teri Schnelle||Office of the Vice President for Student Life|
|Wayne Jacobson||Office of Assessment|
In the past, the University of Iowa has not had integrated campus-wide oversight and direction for coordinating first-generation student initiatives throughout campus, identifying unmet needs, selecting areas for further collaboration, disseminating lessons learned, or advocating for policies and practices that support these students. However, given that nearly a quarter of undergraduate students at the University of Iowa identify as first-generation, the need for such guidance has become increasingly apparent. As a result, the First-Generation Task Force was created to serve some of these functions.
The First-Gen Task Force was convened in Spring 2017, to follow-up on initial recommendations of the 2016 Student Success Task Force and to further examine ways the institution can better support first-generation students. The Task Force was also specifically charged with considering the unique roles of faculty and staff in supporting the academic success of students with whom they work.
The Task Force began its work by reviewing literature- sharing research and best practices related to supporting first-generation students among its members- and assembling current institutional data. Because the Task Force meets only a few times throughout each semester, much of its work is done through smaller working groups that are assigned a specific task to complete and bring back to the larger group. As of October 2018, the working groups have so far:
- Developed a handout that distills current research and institutional data and provides a brief introduction to the campus community on first-generation student concerns.
- Entered a partnership with the UI Undergraduate Student Government to host a now annual "I'm the First" First-Generation Summit.
- Discussed plans for networking and mentoring opportunities that involve students, faculty, staff, and potentially, alumni.
- Initiated conversations on strategic dissemination of a cohesive, data-informed message to faculty and staff through trainings and purposeful discussions that will create systematic institutional change.
- Created a website designed to serve as a faculty and staff-facing campus hub of materials that includes critical information and a comprehensive listing of current Task Force events and initiatives.
- Collaborated with UI Marketing & Design to create the “1stGen@Iowa” logo and branding identity of the institutional initiative that seeks to inform and educate the campus community, support first-generation students in their academic and career endeavors, and ensure that students ultimately succeed at the University of Iowa.
- Led efforts to participate in the annual National First-Generation College Celebration through a week-long, campus-wide series of events every November.
- Launched plans to recognize and celebrate first-generation students and advocates in an annual First-Generation Award and Recognition ceremony (inaugural event held in November 2019).
- Worked to increase awareness of and celebrate the first-generation identity on campus through various campus initiatives.
- Created the "1stGen@Iowa Celebration Day" t-shirt distribution and coordinated efforts for all t-shirt owners to wear their shirts on the first Thursday of the fall semester, which also coincides with CDE's Community of Color Day.
- Partnered with Residence Education and Rhetoric to bring back the First-Gen LLC and helped with programming elements.
- Earned a First-Gen Forward designation, which recognizes institutions of higher education across the country that have demonstrated a commitment to improving experiences and advancing outcomes for first-generation college students.