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SCU First Gen Staff/Faculty Profiles

Susan Gutierrez
Sr. Business Analyst, Graduate Programs, Provost's Office
Where did you attend college?

San Jose State University

What was your college experience like as a first-generation college student?

Coming from a small town in the CA Central Valley and attending San Jose State was a big culture shock for me. Luckily, I was involved in MEChA so that gave me a community that I could relate to as well as the opportunity to get involved in educational and social activities. However, I felt I was lacking in mentors or a support system. I worked full-time while in college and it was a struggle to balance school and work life. Ultimately, I persevered and was the first college graduate in my family and extended family.

What message do you have to share with current first-generation college students?

If you have any trouble navigating college life or academics, reach out! It's sometimes scary to ask for help or guidance, but there are people at your college who are ready to help you.