Helping First Gen College Students Advance

College student Kimberly Navarro

Nervous, excited, anxious, and overwhelmed are all feelings students may experience when they begin their first year of college. To ease the transition into this new chapter, some students seek out college advice from family members or friends, while for others, like first-generation college students, it may not be as straightforward.

Support from AltaMed’s Avanzando Through College program has given Kimberly Navarro, a first-generation Mexican-American student studying nursing and pre-med at UCLA, a leg up. Through Avanzando, Kimberly has access to workshops and other learning opportunities to help her successfully navigate college and progress toward her medical career.

“Whether it’s managing a demanding workload or delving into public policy, Avanzando has expanded my perspective, empowering me to incorporate new ideas into my life,” says Kimberly.

She continues by sharing her positive experience with the program, “The guest speakers at Avanzando are always youth-friendly and foster a comfortable environment where I can ask questions. This approach has been instrumental in nurturing my curiosity and encouraging growth.”

Avanzando gives first- and sophomore-year college students across the country the opportunity to learn important skills and advice related to college life, including relationship building, mental health awareness, study skills, and time management. As a bonus, students are also eligible to earn up to $500 in stipends for participating in the program.

“I am eternally thankful for Avanzando through College for the amazing support they have extended me,” says Kimberly. “Navigating college has presented its unique challenges, but with Avanzado, I find peace in knowing that I belong to a strong community that supports me and my peers.”

AltaMed’s Avanzando through College program, conducted in partnership with UnidosUS, ensures that students like Kimberly can overcome barriers to higher education, thrive, and graduate with their degrees. 

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