In Their Own Words: Embarking on My Educational Journey

CenterPoint | March 2018 | Jannie Nigoza, UBMSC and SSS participant

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Jannie Nigoza, SSS participant


As a high school senior, my focus was on prom, final exams, and preparing for life after graduation. The transition from high school to college can be a nerve-racking time for those attending college in the fall semester, especially for first generation college students. I was fortunate to be a participant of the TRIO Upward Bound Math & Science Center (UBMSC), which eased this transition. UBMSC provided me with academic counseling and tutoring, career exploration, and workshops with topics that ranged from financial literacy to time management. The Saturday sessions held at UNLV allowed me to familiarize myself with the campus and get a feel for college life.

After being accepted to UNLV, I applied for the UNLV TRIO Student Support Services (SSS) program. SSS assists eligible college students with overcoming academic, financial or personal barriers that could impair their chances of graduating. As a participant of two TRIO programs, I developed the mindset of not being afraid to ask for help and to take advantage of the financial and academic opportunities available to me. The SSS staff made me feel welcomed and supported as a student struggling to transition to the rigor of a college environment.

SSS recently hosted a Q&A workshop featuring a panel of UNLV seniors who answered questions and offered advice to freshmen SSS participants. The panel of students came from diverse backgrounds, each with a story to tell about their struggles and successes. As a first generation college student, I received valuable tips from the panelists and was left feeling encouraged by their honest and thorough answers. Embarking on this next chapter of my life has been stressful, but being a SSS participant has made it less intimidating. I remain thankful for both of the TRIO programs and all the resources that they provide. I will continue to share the benefits of these programs with other students who need that extra push to succeed in college.

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