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First Generation College Students at UW

mamadtbmamadtb 43 replies5 threads Junior Member
edited April 9 in University of Wisconsin
My son is going to be attending UW this fall and is a first generation college student. I always dreamed of the possibilities of this happening, but the reality is still sinking in.
For those of you who have been in our position before (as the parent or the student), did you find the transition from high school to college difficult?
edited April 9
4 replies
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Replies to: First Generation College Students at UW

  • 2plustrio2plustrio 302 replies5 threads Member
    How far away will he be from home?
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  • wis75wis75 14374 replies65 threads Senior Member
    Neither here. But what counts is how well prepared your son is, not if parents went to college. Obviously UW thinks he can succeed. He likely took rigorous classes in HS and did well so he knows how to study and has a good knowledge base. That is independent of your background.

    There will be many who have never left home regardless of family. Some will be from small towns and Madison will be a huge change. There will be those whose parents know more about what needs to be brought to campus and what isn't needed. Not to worry about that. There are lists and resources.

    Relax about not knowing anything about how college works. In the past there has been an excellent parent summer orientation program to answer questions that students don't know or won't bother to tell their parents. I found it very useful back in my son's day even though I had gone to UW. With this year's pandemic who knows how things will be done.

    In the past there have been CC threads about sons who don't communicate- like mine was. Your son is/will be an adult and you will know very little about his college life probably. He will choose his classes with help from a UW advisor. You can explore the UW site for dorms, food service and the campus and learn a lot. I recommend getting a copy of his class schedule when the time comes so you know when he can't talk to you. I could PM you with the class start/end/passing times as those get into your brain and never leave (nor change) decades later! The deal is that in today's computer access world you can find out a lot online.

    The transition will depend on your son's personality. I imagine he is sophisticated enough that he will do well. All parents are nervous about their child being able to handle the independence of college. Will the kid who never heard his extra loud alarm clock get up in time? Yes, he did. Will he become arrogant? Duh- no matter how well educated/smart the parents are they may disdain parental knowledge. Remember that he got his intelligence from you- you are as smart as he is (where do you think he got his abilities from?).

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  • barronsbarrons 23087 replies1956 threads Senior Member
    15-20 percent are in the same boat. Not a rarity at UW
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  • wis75wis75 14374 replies65 threads Senior Member
    I have noticed that not many (percentage low) UW applicants or students pay attention to this site. Do not be discouraged by a lack of responses here. Pay attention to the resources that come your way from UW itself. Historically they have had info for parents.
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