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First-generation group reaches out to OTC students

By Steve Koehler

Going to college for the first time can be a bit intimidating. Being the first in your family to attend can be even more daunting.

That’s why there is plenty of support for the 4,100 first-generation college students at Ozarks Technical Community College this fall to help them make the experience as comfortable as possible.

The First-Generation College Student group offers students a chance to meet together and talk about issues. They also hear from peers and others about what to expect at college.

There is an online discussion board for first-generation students to talk about issues or have questions answered.

“There are a lot of challenges and barriers for first-generation students,” said Kathy Christy, the group’s advisor.

“There are relationship issues where some families don’t think the student should be going to college. There’s time management issues and some are in need of remedial assistance.”

Amanda Roberts, a student from Branson West, said her family has been supportive of her attending college.

“But they can’t help me with my homework,” Roberts said, adding that she has looked into the first-generation club and what it offers. She has gotten support from a number of sources.

Dawn Wood of Springfield is a first-generation student who has gone to her instructors for help.

“They’ve been really great. It has been weird coming back to school after so many years away,” she said.

The first-generation group serves as an advocate for students like Roberts and Woods, Christy said.

“We want to enhance their college experience and talk to them about networking possibilities,” said Christy, a former first-generation student herself.

For more information about the group and other support services, go to

Steve Koehler coordinator of publications at Ozarks Technical Community College.





College Director of Communications

Phone: 417.447.2655


Steve Koehler

Coordinator of Publications

Phone: (417) 447-2666


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