Jasmine is part of an under-recognised group. Now her university is tackling the stigma

Feb 23, 2020 by

While American university students proudly wear ‘first in family’ badges, those in Australia suffer higher drop-out rates, lower attendance and worse marks than their peers.

Jasmine Kellett never doubted that she would become the first person in her family to attend university, but her father did.

“My dad was originally sceptical, he was kind of like: ‘Why would you need to go to university? I didn’t go to university and my life turned out great’.”

Beyond some friends starting this year, Jasmine Kellett knows almost nobody with university experience.
Beyond some friends starting this year, Jasmine Kellett knows almost nobody with university experience.Credit:Eddie Jim

Her father, a truck driver, will now “boast to anybody he meets” but, like Jasmine’s mother and two older sisters, can’t draw on first-hand experience.

“My mum is all for it because she didn’t have the opportunity to go to uni herself … [but] it can be a bit daunting because I don’t have anyone really to go to and ask ‘what did you do in this scenario?” Ms Kellett said.

To find guidance, the 18-year-old first-year student joined Victoria University’s Kick Start program, which familiarises first-in-family students with university and helps them overcome their imposter syndrome.

Source: Jasmine is part of an under-recognised group. Now her university is tackling the stigma

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