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Success Story: First-Generation College Student

As a young adult fresh out of high school, I was terrified of the reality that awaited me. With a little push from my previous guidance counselors and newly acquired...

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As a young adult fresh out of high school, I was terrified of the reality that awaited me. With a little push from my previous guidance counselors and newly acquired academic advisors through the college I had chosen to attend, I found my path. I was officially the first individual in my family to attend a university. Being a first-generation college student is one of my greatest achievements.

Fast forward…

Fast forward to the present day, I can proudly say I am also the first individual not only to pursue secondary education, but also the first person to receive an undergraduate degree. The uncertainty and unfamiliarity of being a first-generation college student — the college trailblazer, if you will — was worth every minute spent questioning if I was capable of such success.

Financial freedom

I had always had a dream of becoming a writer, an author, or at least an editor. English Composition and other related courses were naturally easy for me and fueled my passion for putting words on paper. Due to my tenacity and determination to do the unprecedented within my family dynamic, I have been able to become financially stable and have done so completely independently. Until this point, I did not know financial freedom as money was an extremely limited resource growing up.

Confidence and security

Ultimately, it was entirely up to me to push myself out of the “comfort” of accepting the minimum and into the uncomfortable, pivotal opportunity for change. Because of this, I now view change and opportunities with the utmost confidence.

I am now able to not only live financially comfortable but also with a sense of security.

It also doesn’t hurt to have completed that undergraduate milestone, either!

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Actionable Steps



Research and compare tuition costs of the universities you are considering. I was not informed of this and being so young, I wasn’t that concerned with it, but looking back I wish someone had mentioned this to me.


Stay organized!

Keep track of your finances. I kept a binder and found this extremely helpful.


Limit splurges, but spend where necessary

My number one splurge in college was my laptop; I wanted a nice, reliable laptop for my classes.

About the Author

 Murphy Jones

Murphy Jones

Copy Editor

Hi! My name is Murphy and I am a twenty-seven-year-old mother and wife. I love attending sporting events, trying exotic food, and kayaking. I grew up traveling all over the United States, so I was exposed to many different cultures, and have lived in several states including Nebraska, Alabama, North Carolina, and Ohio. Arizona is currently my favorite state I have visited as I am obsessed with the laidback lifestyle!

While residing on the North Carolina coast, I learned to surf and it quickly became one of my favorite hobbies. I also enjoy running, reading, shopping, and traveling. I am currently working as a freelance copy editor. Writing has always been my passion and I’m grateful to be able to pursue my dream. I attended a four-year university and am a first-generation college graduate.

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