Publication Date

Spring 5-9-2020

Document Type

Action research project: Open access

Degree Name

MA Higher Education Leadership


Leadership Studies


The purpose of this study was to explore undergraduate first-generation college students (FGCS) and their campus connections. The overarching research question guiding my study was: How can I, as a FGCS, graduate student and future higher education educator create more accessible on-campus resources for undergraduate FGCS at USD? A secondary question was: In partnering with the first-generation stakeholders how can we better adapt our services to meet the needs of FGCS during their time at USD? Using Coghlan and Brannick’s Cycles of Action Research as a guiding framework, I conducted one pre-cycle, a needs assessment, and three cycles of data collection: a survey, individual interviews with students, and a focus group. My findings suggest that students desire to be a part of programming participation, but they are hindered due to other obligations (i.e. commuting) and not having centralized information. As a result, I developed a set of recommendations to better meet the needs of FGCS.

Creative Commons License

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