First Generation
Scholars Program

Supporting First-Generation College Students

At Loras College we define first-generation college students as any student that will be the first in their family to complete a 4-year degree. First-generation college students have parents/guardians that have not completed a 4-year degree. This program was created because we understand the difficulties that first-generation college students and families face.

The First-Generation Scholars Program at Loras College offers a scholarship up to $1,500 per year. We highlight social connectedness, academic success, mentorship, and personal well-being through intentional and developmental experiences. We take pride in guiding our students on their journey to becoming the first in their family to complete a 4-year college degree.

Unique Features
  • Peer and professional mentorship program.
  • Professional and job-readiness development opportunities.
  • Professional financial planning development opportunities.
  • Cohort model is used to encourage meaningful connections among first-generation students.
  • Receive up to a $1,500 annual scholarship based on financial need. (Awards are renewable with continued program participation)
Criteria to Qualify
  • Apply and be admitted to Loras College.
  • Complete the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA), and add Loras College using the school’s code 001873.
  • Neither parent/guardian have completed a 4-year college degree.
  • Submit the First Generation Scholars Program application and supporting materials. (see application process below)
To be considered for the scholarship you must
  • Scholars must be a first-generation student as defined by Loras College (I.e. First-Generation students have parent(s)/guardian(s) that have not complete a 4-year degree).
  • Scholars must be a full-time student with one of the following status: First-year student, current Loras College student, transfer student with at least 60 credits left to complete their degree.
  • Scholars must agree to fully participate in the First Generation Scholars Program requirements for as long as the award is granted.
  • Scholars must maintain good standings with the College.
Students selected to be a First Generation Scholar must:


The scholarship is renewable for four academic years of full time study. To renew the scholarship per semester students much:

  • Maintain full time status
  • Maintain satisfactory academic progress toward degree completion
  • Abide by all Loras College policies found in the student handbook
  • Represent the college in a positive manner

Disclaimer: Loras College reserves the right to implement changes to the First-Generation Scholar Program per the developmental curriculum and program evaluation plan.

Application Process

1. Applicants must apply using the First-Generation Scholars Program portal below. The application is composed of the following:

  • Demographic information
  • 300-500 word statement of purpose submission.The statement of purpose should highlight the applicant’s academic aspirations, and goals while at Loras College.

2. Applicants will be notified if they have been selected as a candidate for the First-Generation Scholars Program. At that time, applicants are requested to phone interview with the Center for Inclusion and Advocacy.

Scholarship Application is Currently Closed

Login and password required for scholarship application.
If you do not have a Loras College login, please contact your admission representative or email
Resources for First Generation College Students
Strive for College

There’s something special about being first. The first in flight, first man on the moon, the first African-American president, first kisses, first impressions, first place, and being among the first in your family to attend and graduate from college!

I’m First—Created by nonprofit Center for Student Opportunity to provide students who lack a family history of higher education with inspiration, information, and support on the road to and through college

Strive for College—a national nonprofit that also runs a national online mentoring program for college-bound students..

Advice From First Generation College Students

First in the Family: Advice About College from First-Generation Students—Your High School Years
by Kathleen Cushman

“If we can do it, so can you!” That’s the message sent to students in this advice book, written with college students who were the first in their families to go past high school. It’s tough to aim for college if other family members have not—so this book offers the kind of encouraging, practical guidance that an older sibling would give. Inspiring stories of the diverse student contributors—who end up at institutions from community colleges to elite universities—combine with warm and well-organized counsel and checklists.

Click the button below to read the ebook version.

First in the Family: Advice About College from First-Generation Students


Questions? Let’s get in touch.

Sergio Perez
Director of Intercultural Program
563.588.7205 |