I know each school has different criteria, and I live in California so I will be applying to these schools. I am wondering how much each school values the hook.
Look up the Common Data Set for each school, and go to Section C7: under nonacademic admissions factors, there is an entry for “first generation”; you can see how much emphasis (if any) each school places on that factor.
Are you a high school junior? All of the schools you listed consider whether or not a student is first generation but I wouldn’t rely on a hook to get into any of them.
I am not relying on a hook, only curious about how much each individual school I listed considers the hook.
For each of the UCs, Google the name of the school and “common data set”
Here is the USC Common Data Set Scroll down to page six and you will see a chart telling how heavily the school considers a variety of factors, including first generation.
Here is the Stanford Common Data Set
First generation is considered in the UC application review but if you are not academically competitive for the UC’s, it will not tip the scales. First and foremost the UC’s are GPA focused along with strong HS course rigor and personal insight essays which are considered very important.