COVID-19 Blog

FGLI COVID-19 Stories

COVID-19 has greatly impacted many people around the world, especially first-generation and/or low-income (FGLI) students. With this special edition COVID-19 blog initiative, Rise First hopes to achieve three key objectives:

  1. raise awareness of the challenges FGLI students are experiencing during this unprecedented crisis,
  2. provide a platform for FGLI students to share their stories,
  3. offer support to the best of our ability (through financial assistance and a curated COVID-19 resources list)

Rise First is honored to be able to provide a platform for student authors to opt-in to sharing their heartfelt and inspiring experiences with others so that no one will feel alone during these trying times. The inspiring stories published here are unedited to fully reflect each author’s voice. They are weaved together by common threads of determination, hope, and a sense of community - we truly are all in this together.

The students named in the blog entries below have opted-in to display their bios and have provided headshots for publishing.

Posts from students at University of Wisconsin-Madison


Isabella Boudnik - University of Wisconsin-Madison

Much like high school, each year of college brings its own unique milestones and emotions. I cannot speak to the crushing disappointment seniors are currently facing, nor can I accurately portray the feelings of a first-year student who has been cheated out of two months of their freshman year. I can only speak for myself and other third-year students. I am currently a junior studying political science and education policy at the University of Wisconsin-Madison.

After two weeks of chaos, I can confidently say that this is every FGLI student’s nightmare.

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