Document Type

Capstone Project (Open Access)

Degree Name

Bachelor of Science (B.S.)


Liberal Studies


Human Development and Family Science

First Advisor

Rob Weisskirch


The transition to college may be challenging for first-generation college students (FGCS). FGCS are individuals whose parents did not have the opportunity to pursue their bachelor's degrees. Therefore, FGCS may not have enough knowledge of the expectations of college. As a result, they may experience imposter syndrome, family achievement guilt, and not have enough social support to guide them through their college journey. This capstone paper focuses on the experiences of FGCS who have encountered imposter syndrome, family achievement guilt, and how social support can provide them with the reassurance that they do belong in the spaces they are in. The project was conducted for two days with the TRIO Student Support Services program at CSU Monterey Bay. Participants were expected to (1) identify two aspects of imposter syndrome, (2) indicate two ways of addressing their imposter syndrome feelings, and (3) Identify one campus-based resource. The majority of the learning outcomes were met, and many participants shared their experiences as first-generation college students.