Will cross-generational community foster success?


However unique their experiences, Columbia alumni and students whose parents didn’t go to college or who come from low-income families share common ground. Now these Columbians of underrepresented backgrounds can connect with each other more easily.

In 2017, building a supportive and cross-generational community, alumni partnered with the Columbia Alumni Association to launch the Columbia First Generation Low Income Alumni Network (CFLAN). CFLAN kicked off in 2018 with a discussion about what a first-generation identity means to alumni.

The inaugural board of CFLAN includes recent graduates of Columbia College, the School of the Arts, Barnard College, School of Professional Studies, and the School of Engineering and Applied Sciences.

“CFLAN can become a strong resource for students who may feel overwhelmed, young alumni who feel unsupported, and seasoned alumni who feel a strong obligation to provide the resources they wish they had,” said inaugural president Lily Rocha ’10CC. “From professional development to life advice tailored to first-generation and low-income students and alumni, CFLAN will help Columbians achieve success, no matter what that may look like." Learn more.

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