Program for First-Generation Students Salutes Graduates

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The First Year Student Enrichment Program (FYSEP) started in the fall of 2009 as a student initiative to support incoming students who are the first in their family to attend college. With full administrative support for the last four years, the program has 23 members of the Class of 2014 who will become the first in their family to graduate from college Sunday morning.

FYSEP participants

Participants in the First Year Student Enrichment Program (FYSEP) gathered on June 2 to celebrate the program’s success, including, from left to right, front row: Liz Agosto, associate dean of the College; FYSEP students Britta McOmber, and Chelsea Suydam; FYSEP mentor Kathleen Dobell; and FYSEP student Semarley Jarrett; second row: FYSEP students Dylan Gabel, Ben Nguyen, and Jacqui Calloway; third row: FYSEP students Tashneen Bakht, Tev’n Powers, Paolo Cazares, and Jamilah Mena; fourth row: FYSEP students Eduardo Zapata and Edgar Sandoval; and FYSEP mentors Yesenia Valadez and Jennifer Gargano; fourth row: FYSEP students Marianna Cid, Ryan Tibble, and Amanda Spoto; back row: Associate Professor of Mathematics Scott Pauls; Marlene Heck, senior lecturer in art history; Katherine Burke, senior assistant dean of the College; and (obscured) Inge-Lise Ameer, senior associate dean of the College. (Photo by Jay Davis ’90)

Graduating FYSEP participants with the Class of 2014:

Rachel Aragon ’14
Dieymabou Barry ’14
Paola Cazares ’14
Marianna Cid ’14
Victoria Fernandez ’14
Dylan Gabel ’14
Helen Hou ’14
Clifford Hughes Jr. ’14
Semarley Jarrett ’14
Brett Losen ’14
Abigail Macias ’14
Britta McOmber ’14
Jamilah Mena ’14
Ben Nguyen ’14
Mehdi Oulmakki ’14
Tev’n Powers ’14
Andres Ramirez ’14
Edgar Sandoval ’14
Amanda Spoto ’14
Ryan Tibble ’14
William Velazquez ’14
Jessica R. Womack ’14
Eduardo Zapata ’14

“As each of these wonderful young men and women crosses the stage on Sunday, I will think about the impact this College has had on them,” says FYSEP Director Jay Davis ’90. “More significantly, though, I will think about the incredibly positive impact they have had on this college.”

FYSEP began as a year-long mentorship program that connected first-year students with trained upper-class mentors. The core of the program is an eight-day pre-orientation offering sample classes with Dartmouth faculty, workshops, activities, and seminars designed to simulate life at Dartmouth and to prepare participants to handle the challenges they may face during the course of their first year at Dartmouth.

“More than 130 students have come through FYSEP program to date. Over time, the peer network has continued to develop, with many FYSEP students going on to become mentors, including many of our 2014 graduates,” says Liz Agosto ’01, associate dean of the College. Agosto, the first in her family to go to college, worked with students in 2009 to develop the program and has continued to provide support.

“FYSEP provides a rigorous, dynamic and transformative experience that puts participants in a position to thrive at Dartmouth both academically and socially,” says Inge-Lise Ameer, senior associate dean of the College. “The participation and commitment of student mentors and our faculty has been key to the great success of the FYSEP program,” she says.