G-1 Mentorship Program

The G-1 Leadership Development program aims to promote student engagement, learning and professional development for First-Generation college students at Kalamazoo College. The program’s activities include a dinner learning series, featured CCPD (Center for Career and Professional Development) and ISL (Intercultural Student Life) events, an online community with a discussion board, engagement with alumni and peer-to-peer discussions.

How to Participate

If you are interested in participating in the G-1 Leadership Development Program, please contact Natalia at ncarvalh@kzoo.edu.

Monthly Dinners & Recommended First-Year-Forums

First-Generation (G-1) Students Monthly Dinner

  • Program introduction and overview, icebreakers and a student-panel

First-Generation (G-1) Students Monthly Dinner

  • Guests: K. Alumni
  • Join Kalamazoo College Alumni – all of whom identify as First – for a conversation on their college experiences, navigating the workforce, and things they wish they had known during their time in college.

First-Generation (G-1) Students Monthly Dinner: Beyond A Degree: Financial Literacy 101 & My Future

  • Also counts as a First-Year-Forum, Group 3
  • Guest: Dr. Darryl Scriven, Winston-Salem State University
  • Join Dr. Darryl Scriven – filmmaker, author and Dean of the College of Business & Education at Winston-Salem State University – for the screening of his documentary “Overcoming Student Loan Debt”, and an interactive workshop and discussion following the 30-minute film. Come learn basic personal budgeting skills (including how to build credit history), tips about managing your financial aid, and get information about resources that can help with keeping your education more affordable.

First Year Forum (Group 1): An Evening With Angela Davis

  • Angela Davis is an activist, scholar, and writer who advocates for the oppressed. She has authored several books including Freedom is a Constant Struggle. This talk coincides with the opening of On the Inside Out, an exhibit on mass incarceration at the Richmond Center

First-Year Forum (Group 1): Islamophobia and the Politics of the Muslim Identity in the U.S. (Coordinator: Arcus Center)

  • Arsalan Iftikhar is an international human rights lawyer, global media commentator and author of the book Islamic Pacifism: Global Muslims in the Post-Osama Era. He also serves as Senior Editor for the Islamic Monthly magazine.

First-Year-Forum (Group 2): MiKroagressions

  • What are microaggressions? Microaggressions are commonplace verbal or behavior indignities, whether intentional or unintentional, which communicate hostile, derogatory, or negative slights and insults that target a person or group of people (Sue, 2004). The main objective of this session is to raise awareness of microaggressions and how they impact the daily lives people who are not in the dominant group. Strategies for addressing microaggressions will also be discussed and practiced. We hope participants will leave the session with increased knowledge, awareness, and a commitment to being an active participant in decreasing the occurrences of microaggressions in our community.

First-Year-Forum (Group 4): Career? I Just Got Here!

  • Session with pre-Homecoming speed networking practice.

First Year and Summer Thoughts

Academic Checklist - 1st Year

  • Get to know your advisor and help your advisor get to know you 
  • Establish a strong GPA by using effective study strategies 
  • Meet with your advisor during Advising Days – Weeks 6 & 7 (every quarter) 
  • Attend workshops 
  • Attend your First Year Forums (fall) 
  • Visit the Learning Commons in the library – it offers resources such as Supplemental Instruction, Writing Center, Study Groups, English as a Second Language, Research Center, etc. 
  • Push yourself to take classes that allow you to explore and stretch 
  • View/update your K-Plan Commonplace and respond to reflection prompts 
  • Begin narrowing choices for potential major; familiarize yourself with requirements 
  • Talk with Departmental Student Advisors (DSAs)
  • Take a class (as/if needed) at your local College if you need to “make up” for any lossed credits (consult with your advisor before enrolling in summer classes) 
  • Think about if you want to study abroad/away; talk to the Center for International Programs (CIP) staff, attend CIP info sessions.

Professional and Leadership Skills

  • Attend K. Fest in the Fall 
  • Join a Student Organization on campus 
  • Get engaged in the community with the CCE 
  • Attend workshops and/or Arcus Center programs and trainings 
  • Get a campus job 
  • Look for the Discovery Externship Program application process (early winter) 
  • Look for the Student Leadership Application process (late Winter/Early Spring) 
  • Attend a Passions To Professions Lunch 
  • Make a LinkedIn profile 
  • Apply to be a Civic Engagement Scholar for the CCE program you’re working in (Spring) 
  • Attend a CIP information session & start thinking about what you hope to gain from study abroad (winter)

Personal Growth and Development

  • Don’t be afraid to seek the Counseling Center as needed to help you be more successful academically, to help with stress, to discuss personal problems, etc.
  • Attend Support Group meetings (First Generation Support Dinners, Sukuma, Food for the Soul, …) 
  • Meet others in your major and in your classes 
  • Meet your RA
  • Attend a Community Reflection
  • Meet with a peer mentor
  • Talk to Alumni (many are currently working at K. – others will be available at Homecoming and CCPD events)
  • Attend Arcus Center programs and trainings
  • Learn where your financial aid office is
  • Apply for FAFSA / Scholarships (October through early Winter) 
  • Explore Kalamazoo and connect with communities off campus (religious/spiritual orgs, advocacy groups, recreational leagues or groups, cultural centers, celebrations, Art Hop, Food Truck Friday, Farmer’s Market, etc.)

Sophomore Year To Do's

Academics

  • Meet regularly with your advisor, and make plans to always meet with them during Advising Days – Weeks 6 & 7 (every quarter) 
  • Take a Sophomore Seminar 
  • Declare your major (Winter) 
  • Apply for study abroad/away 
  • Keep up your GPA 
  • Switch to an advisor in your major (recommended, but not required) 
  • Use your Degree Audit to track graduation requirements 
  • Get to know the faculty in your program and make sure they know who you are 
  • Find out what you need to do to graduate with honors in your major and work with your advisor toward that goal. 
  • Ask your department about the SIP process 
  • View/update your K-Plan Commonplace and respond to reflection prompts 
  • Push yourself to take classes that allow you to explore and stretch
  • Take a class (as/if needed) at your local College if you need to “make up” for any lossed credits (consult with your advisor before enrolling in summer classes)

Professional and Leadership Skills

  • Create your resume/Cover letter 
  • Apply for summer internships/externships 
  • Take a career assessment in the CCPD 
  • Research careers that utilize your interests, strengths and passions 
  • Engage in an off-campus CCE program 
  • Attend a Passions to Professions Lunch 
  • Attend Workshops and/or Arcus Center programs and trainings 
  • Research your dream job credentials needed 
  • Mentor another student or youth 
  • Become a Student Organization Leader 
  • Get a campus job / internship 
  • Apply to be a Civic Engagement Scholar for the CCE program you’re working ‘ in (Spring) 
  • Connect with Alumni on LinkedIn 
  • Sign up for a professional photo for your LinkedIn profile through Say Cheese at the PDI (fall) 
  • Refer to your “Life After K” folder from the CCPD 
  • Apply to the Social Justice Leadership Fund for off-campus social justice leadership development opportunities (application available year-round)
  • Do an externship, internship, or research project 
  • Do a Community Building Internship in Kalamazoo 
  • Be a Peer or Orientation Leader

Personal Growth and Development

  • Apply for scholarships (Fall/Winter) 
  • Attend Workshops and/or Arcus Center programs and trainings 
  • Meditate 
  • Meet others in your major/classes 
  • Join local community organizations related to your interests 
  • Renew FAFSA (October) 
  • Explore Kalamazoo and connect with communities off-campus (religious/spiritual organizations, advocacy groups, recreational leagues or groups, cultural centers, celebrations, Art Hop, Food Truck Friday, Farmer’s Market, etc.)
  • Spend time doing something that is important to you and/or that leaves you feeling rejuvenated in some way. 
  • Cultivate your networks (with Alumni, employers, and others you met and/or worked with last summer and throughout the year)

Junior Year...Let's Get Ready!

Academics

  • Meet with your advisor during Advising Days – Weeks 6&7 (every quarter)
  • Use your Degree Audit to track graduation requirements
  • Study Abroad / Away
  • Keep up your GPA
  • Research Grad Schools
  • Take the GRE/GMAT/etc…
  • Attend Workshops
  • Choose your SIP topic
  • Pre-plan your SIP (senior year individualized/final project)
  • Make a list of grad school application deadlines
  • Write a personal statement for grad school applications
  • View/update your K-Plan Commonplace and respond to reflection prompts
  • Begin your SIP

Professional and Leadership

  • Study Abroad / Away
  • Update your resume/cover letter to include your summer experience
  • Do a mock interview
  • Apply for a summer internship or research opportunity (Winter/Spring)
  • Get a job on/off campus
  • Attend Workshops and/or Arcus Center programs and trainings
  • Network on Linkedin
  • Go to a job fair, even if you’re not looking right now, for practice
  • Connect with professors/advisors who could write letters of recommendation
  • Get involved with the local/national chapter of a professional association in your field
  • If you are on campus, attend the PDI Connection Reception on the Friday of Homecoming
  • Apply to the Social Justice Leadership Fund for off-campus social justice leadership development opportunities (application available year-round)
  • Refer to your “Life After K” folder from the CCPD
  • Apply to be a Civic Engagement Scholar for the Center for Civic Engagement (CCE) program you’re working in (Spring)
  • Do an internship or SIP-related research
  • Do a Community Building Internship in Kalamazoo with the CCE

Personal Growth and Development

  • Apply for scholarships
  • Attend Workshops and/or Arcus Center programs and trainings
  • Renew FAFSA (October)
  • Build relationships with faculty/staff/employers or outside agencies who can provide references and recommendations, and support you in your future
  • Network with your peers and make healthy personal and financial choices
  • Eat well
  • Mentor another student or youth
  • Explore Kalamazoo and connect with communities off campus (religious/spiritual organizations, advocacy groups, recreational leagues or groups, cultural centers, celebrations, Art Hop, Food Truck Friday, Farmer’s Market, etc.)

This is it...SENIOR YEAR!

Academics

Fall - Senior Academics Checklist

  • Meet with Registrar’s Office for Degree Audit meeting
  • Apply for graduation
  • Apply to Grad Schools
  • Meet with your advisor during Advising Days – Weeks 6 & 7 (every quarter)
  • Attend workshops
  • Continue your senior project
  • Publish your work if possible or present it publicly
  • Find a SIP support group (The Intercultural Center offers SIP support meetings) & peer group you can talk about your SIP with and receive feedback.
  • Take at least one Senior Capstone course (anytime during senior year)

Winter - Senior Academics Checklist

  • Meet regularly with SIP Advisor
  • Explore opportunities to present your SIP beyond K.
  • Order cap and gown
  • Invite faculty/staff/guests formally to your SIP presentation

Professional Development

Fall - Senior Professional Development Checklist

  • Be a Student Organization leader
  • Ask an alumni professional in the field you’re interested in to review your résumé
  • Update your resume /cover letter
  • Assemble References/Letters of Recommendation (3)
  • Check application deadlines in your chosen career fields and/or graduate programs
  • Update and expand your LinkedIn profile to showcase your skills
  • Map out your job search strategy and assemble a list of prospective employers
  • Attend fall Recruiting Expo
  • Attend Workshops and/or Arcus Center programs and trainings
  • Schedule a Hornet Huddle at the PDI
  • Attend the PDI Connection Reception on the Friday of Homecoming

Winter - Senior Professional Development Checklist

  • Attend WMU Career Fairs in February
  • Attend the CCPD’s Senior Etiquette Dinner in January
  • Apply to jobs and follow up on your applications
  • Polish your resume/websites
  • Contact employers
  • Do a mock interview
  • Attend job fairs and the spring Recruiting Expo on campus
  • Attend CCPD’s “Confident at Commencement” series for seniors

Personal Growth and Development

Fall - Senior Personal Growth and Development Checklist

  • Attend Workshops and/or Arcus Center programs and trainings Volunteer
  • Check your credit report
  • Keep your finances in good shape
  • Explore Kalamazoo and connect with communities off campus (religious/spiritual organizations, advocacy groups, recreational leagues or groups, cultural centers, celebrations, Art Hop, Food Truck Friday, Farmer’s Market, etc.)

Winter - Senior Personal Growth and Development Checklist

  • Manage your stress – attend Support Groups meetings (in the Intercultural Center, Counseling Center, Residence Halls)
  • Check out the Praxis Center for continued social justice learning and growth
  • Network, network, network
  • Manage stress
  • Plan for your next steps personally and financially
  • Complete your loan exit interview and prepare to repay Student Loans (6 mos. After Graduation)
  • Check out the Praxis Center for continued social justice learning and growth

Learning the Language at K

Acronyms

At Kalamazoo College, we use a variety of acronyms to describe various things. Here is a list to help you get around!

  • ACSJL – Arcus Center for Social Justice Leadership
  • CA – Career Advisor
  • CCE – Center for Civic Engagement
  • CCPD – Center for Career and Professional Development
  • CIP – Center for International Programs
  • FAB – Fine Arts Building
  • FAC MAN - Facilities Management
  • FERPA – Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act
  • GLCA – Great Lakes Collegiate Association
  • HBCU – Historically Black Colleges and Universities
  • IC – Intercultural Center
  • ICRP – Integrative Cultural Project
  • ISA – International Student Advisor
  • ISL – Intercultural Student Life
  • ISO – International Students Organization
  • OSI – Office of Student Involvement
  • OP – Outdoor Programs
  • PA – Peer Advisor
  • PM – Program Manager
  • RD – Resident Director
  • ResLife – Residential Life
  • SIP – Senior Individualized Project
  • StuDev – Student Development
  • StuOrgs – Student Organizations
  • TA – Teaching Assistant

Other Commonly Used College Terminology

  • Academic Advisor/Counselor - This person will help you select the correct courses, review the course requirements in the field you have selected to pursue and help you with any academic problems you may encounter. At some institutions, academic advisement is conducted by faculty as part of their job duties. Other institutions may designate specific staff as academic counselors.
  • Academic Probation - All colleges require students to maintain a minimum cumulative grade point average (GPA) to remain in school. Any student not maintaining satisfactory progress toward his/her educational objectives will be placed on probation for a semester.
  • Bookstore - All colleges have bookstores. It will generally stock all the books and other materials required in all the courses offered at the institution as well as providing basic sundries and clothing items.
  • Business Office - The Business Office is responsible for all financial transactions of the institution. It may also be called the Bursar's Office on some campuses.
  • Common Time – “Free Hour”, usually during late morning/lunch, where no classes are held. Typically used as a time to meet with student groups and faculty.
  • Department - A department is the basic organizational unit in a higher education institution, and is responsible for the academic functions in a field of study. It may also be used in the broader sense to indicate an administrative or service unit of an institution.
  • Division - A division could be several different things: an administrative unit of an institution, usually consisting of more than one department… a unit of an institution based on the year-level of students - i.e., lower and upper division… or a branch of the institution, instructional or not - i.e., the Division of Student Development.
  • Extra-Curricular Activities - These are non-classroom activities that can contribute to a well-rounded education. They can include such activities as athletics, clubs, student government, recreational and social organizations and events.
  • Faculty - The faculty is composed of all persons who teach classes for colleges.
  • Prerequisite Courses - A prerequisite course is a course taken in preparation for another course. For example, accounting 1 is a prerequisite for Accounting 2.
  • Registrar - The registrar of an institution is responsible for the maintenance of all academic records and may include such duties as: maintenance of class enrollments, providing statistical information on student enrollment, certification of athletic eligibility and student eligibility for honor rolls, certification of the eligibility of veterans, administering probation and retention policies and verification of the completion of degree requirements for graduation.
  • Student Identification Card (I.D.) - A student ID is usually required in college. It is similar to a driver’s license and generally includes a photograph of the student, a student number (ID number), the student’s name, the name of the college and possibly the semester enrolled. The card is often required for admittance to functions sponsored by the college or for identification when cashing checks or for other purposes, and to receive student discounts.
  • Syllabus - An outline of the important information about a course. Written by the professor or instructor, it usually includes important dates, assignments, expectations and policies specific to that course. Some are quite lengthy.
  • Transcript - The transcript is a permanent academic record of a student at college. It may show courses taken, grades received, academic status and honors received. Transcripts are not released by the college if the student owes any money to the college.
  • Tutor - A tutor is a person, generally another student, who has completed and/or demonstrated proficiency in a course or subject, and is able to provide instruction to another student. Tutors usually help students better understand course material and make better grades.
  • Withdrawal - Students may withdraw from courses during a semester, but there are established procedures for doing so. The college catalog and/or Class Schedule generally specifies the procedures. Written approval from a university official must be secured, and some fees must be paid.