Publication Date

Spring 4-27-2020

Document Type

Action research project: Open access

Degree Name

MA Higher Education Leadership


Leadership Studies


Research shows that first-generation students have historically had less guidance and resources to support their educational attainment and career development (Tate et al., 2015). This has resulted in considerable growth in the amount of support systems, programs, and services implemented by educational institutions across the United States to help first-generation college students thrive in higher education and their future careers. This study sought to improve my understanding of the career readiness of first-generation students at USD. By engaging with and gathering data from first-generation students, I have greater insight about ways of supporting first-generation students’ career readiness and vocational confidence through heightened support from the Career Development Center in navigating career resources and processes. Themes that arose include social and familial pressures, uncertainty, and unfamiliarity. Recommendations include demystifying the meaning of career readiness, tailoring programming and outreach efforts, and implementing resource-specific workshops.

Creative Commons License

Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.