Degree: BA in Communication; MPA- Public Administration
Graduation Year: 2009/2012
Your First-Gen Experience:
"As a first-generation college student, I was unaware and unfamiliar on how to navigate this new environment and form the needed connections to become successful. It is like entering unfamiliar territory and being expected to thrive and succeed like your peers and counterparts without assistance or direction. Thankfully, I was able to find my sense of belonging and community from various outlets within the campus community which enabled me to perform well academically and socially at Jacksonville State University."
Your Journey Since Graduation:
"My experience as a first-generation college student at Jacksonville State University not only helped my progression through my undergraduate career but it also offered resources which supported my success as a first-generation graduate student. Upon graduation, I was able to obtain employment in my desired career field, engage with other first-generation college students, and become an advocate for other incoming students who share in a similar experience."
Your Favorite Thing About JSU:
"Jacksonville State University will forever have a special place in my heart. As a first-generation Black man, it was important that I found my sense of belonging within the campus which aided in retention and persistence to graduation. I was able to find this belonging from the faculty and staff that took an earnest interest in my success. In addition, the campus community offered a plethora of resources (fraternity and sorority life, student government association, and housing and residence life) for me to get involved and invested into my institution. Both of these factors are why I support the university and advocate for future students to enroll become a part of an impact and rewarding experience."
Your Biggest Misconception About College:
"One major misconception that I had about college was that it would be similar to my high school experience. While I excelled tremendously in high school graduating at the top of my class, the rigorous coursework in college is vastly different. It took a serious amount of discipline and self determination to grasp the coursework and seek assistance when needed. While in high school, everyone was taking the same courses from the same instructors, so it was quite simple to seek aid from fellow peers, however, college requires students to make connections with their instructors and take advantage of the tutorial programs that are offered.I am not sure if I had a misconception, but I didn't realize what type of challenge college was going to be. Finding balance when entering college is a key to my success. Enjoy the college experience. As the saying goes, you will get out of it what you put into it. "