The Gen-1 Theme House is an off-campus residence designed to provide first-year, first-generation students with the support needed to make a successful transition from high school to college.
The Gen-1 Theme House serves freshmen who are most at risk for dropping out of college – first generation, Pell eligible students – by providing a 24/7 structured living and learning environment, as well as tutoring and mentoring support. The house has a full-time program coordinator, as well as a graduate assistant, who live at the home and serve as mentor/advisors. Program supports include mentoring, individual and small-group tutoring, voluntary and mandatory study sessions, frequent monitoring of student academic performance and social activities and professional counseling and guidance. Students also participate in a weekly course, “Surviving and Thriving at UC,” which emphasizes building strengths in study skills and time management. The course yields one credit hour per quarter.
Residents must sign a seven-page contract in addition to abiding by procedures outlined in UC student and housing codes of conduct. The contract includes committing to all mandatory tutoring and study sessions, abiding by a curfew and observing evening and overnight quiet hours to maximize study time. Students must commit to earning a minimum GPA of 2.25 per academic quarter and achieve a cumulative GPA of 2.33 by the end of winter quarter. They commit to tidying their room and shared spaces in the house. They must also agree to work no more than 20 hours a week when classes are in session.
In the 2008 report from the Pell Institute for the Study of Opportunity in Higher Education, “Moving Beyond Access: College Success for Low-Income, First-Generation Students,” it was stated that 24 percent of all of the nation’s undergraduate students are first-generation students from economically disadvantaged backgrounds. The report also found that these students were four times more likely to drop out of college during or after their freshman year, compared with their peers who were not first-generation, low-income students.
That same report found that the college experience may play a factor in whether these high-risk students continue to stay on the pathway to achieving a college degree. That’s because they’re less likely to participate in activities that connect them to their college experience, including both academic and social activities. UC’s Gen-1 House establishes these connections under one roof.
Click here for more information about the Gen-1 Theme House.