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When Colleges Send New Students 450 Emails, They are Part of the Problem

I discovered at my first and only college advisement session at the end of my sophomore year that I needed just one more semester to graduate. (I had overloaded my schedule and taken summer courses.) The advisement lasted 10 minutes as there was a line of students outside the door. The adviser never suggested I explore study abroad or internships to enhance my resume, and I didn’t realize those options existed.

As a first-generation college student, I didn’t know all that I didn’t know, and neither did my parents. Research shows such students often miss out on opportunities, fail to connect with professors or seek help when they fall behind. Even students who graduate at the top of their high school classes are unprepared for the maze of bureaucracy, deadlines and forms. Too many kids disappear in the mist and never graduate.