Why a podcast?

Empowering storytellers and listeners

Our goal is to empower both storytellers and listeners by dispelling myths about linear career paths.

We want to normalize authentic discussions about personal and professional success by providing a platform for people to celebrate their success and their failures.

Our hope is that this will encourage first generation students and graduates to be compassionate with themselves as they grow into their careers.

Don't be afraid to dream big.
You can be whoever you want to be
and do whatever you want to do.
First Generation Graduate

First Generation Identity

First generation college students can't rely on their families for firsthand information about how to navigate the road to and through college.

In most cases, this is because they are the first in their family to go to college. But not always! For example, people pursuing full-time four-year degrees might also identify with first generation experiences if:

Their parents attended community college.
Their parents attended college in the evenings after work.
Their parents attended school outside of the United States.
They are estranged from their parents.

Forward F1rst intentionally uses a broad definition for first generation identity, and we’ve built the resources and community to support anyone who identifies as first generation.

First Generation Strengths


First generation students struggle on the road through college, but the courage to undertake this struggle reveals a strength that was there all along.


First generation students have experience persisting in their pursuit of long-term goals, as evidenced by the sustained efforts that help them forge a path to college.


First generation students’ path through college is nonlinear. They persist through the highs and lows of the transition to college, rising to the challenge each time.