Being the “first” to do anything is exciting and intimidating. It makes such a difference to have a support system that will keep you on track and celebrate your successes.


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First Ever

Of the 7.3 million undergrads attending four-year colleges and universities in the United States, about 20 percent are first-generation students—students whose parents haven’t earned a four-year degree.  If you’re one of those 1.46 million people, congratulations and welcome! We know that navigating your way through the ins and outs of choosing a college—or even deciding which colleges to consider—isn’t easy. Fortunately, we’ve got a big safety net in place to make sure our first-gen students have what they need to succeed—inside and outside of the classroom.

Fast Fact:

What do President Bill Clinton, First Lady Michelle Obama, Supreme Court Justice Sonia Sotomayor, and media mogul Oprah Winfrey have in common?  They were all first-generation college students.

Community of Learners

The Dietrich School’s Student Support Services (SSS) team has one purpose in life: helping first-generation and low-income students to make the most of their time at Pitt. SSS offers advising, skills- building workshops, leadership training, and academic tutoring as well as lots of fun social outings and activities. Being part of SSS is like having access to a one-stop resource extravaganza. Tutoring? Time management? Career counseling? Movie night? Check, check, checkity, check.

Mentors, Meet the Mentors!

They love animals, anime, yoga, fishing, and Starbucks. And we love them.  SSS Peer Mentors are key members of our SSS team. These juniors and seniors are successful SSS participants who have chosen to give back to Pitt and the program by sharing their experiences, advice, and (if you ask nicely) recommendations for the best pizza in Pittsburgh.