"NSPA has been the catalyst to helping us be more effective and efficient in our mission! Through the national conference and resource meetings, we have had the privilege to learn from like-minded organizations, discover new tools of the trade, and share in the wider movement to help more deserving students earn their college degrees."
David R. Dukes
Simon Foundation for Education and Housing
NSPA Member Highlights
"Membership in NSPA is helping us better support aspiring first-generation college students across the country. We're improving how we administer the annual I'm First Scholarship and growing our reach to support more students who strive to be the first in their family to attend college.”
- Chelsea M. Jones, Student Support Associate
Center for Student Opportunity (CSO) is a national 501(c)(3) nonprofit empowering first-generation college students on the path to and through college.
In October, Fastweb and NSPA recognized CSO as 2012 Scholarship Provider of the Year for their innovative I'm First Scholarship program. Since 2009, CSO has awarded $2,000, 4-year renewable scholarships to students from across the country who beat the odds to become the first in their family to attend college. Uniquely, these students chronicle their college experiences and offer advice on the I'm First web blog.
We are currently accepting applications for the next class of I'm First Scholarship winners. Apply by May 24, 2013.
In 2012, CSO beta launched the I'm First web site to celebrate and support first-generation college students. I'm First is a collecting pledges and personal stories from first-generation college graduates—and students who will be—that offer inspiration and advice to the next generation of students who will be first. The I'm First Dashboard also provides aspiring first-generation college students and their supporters with a portal to research and connect with colleges that care about first-generation college students, find answers to their questions about college, and take the steps necessary to pursue and succeed in college.
CSO also annually publishes and distributes the College Access & Opportunity Guide, a unique college guidebook designed to help first-generation college students make their college dreams a reality. Since 2008, we've sold and distributed over 25,000 books to schools and youth-serving organizations across the country.