05 Nov 2021

1stGEN@UNI: A Project to Show Students That University Is Right for Them

1stGEN@UNI: A Project to Show Students That University Is Right for Them

Bocconi and citi foundation working together to bring disadvantaged students closer to a university education. Focus groups, a training course and the chance to access scholarships.

The transition from high school to a university education is a very delicate step. When young people’s expectations collide with daily struggles and, as in the past year, also with a pandemic that exacerbates differences in learning opportunities (Auditel-Census data show that 3.5 million families have struggled with online learning), the risk is high that some of these young people may not end up choosing to go to University. This is especially true if they have no outside help. It is therefore important to promote awareness of how a university education can be a powerful engine of social mobility among students struggling financially and socially. With this goal in mind, Bocconi University and the Citi Foundation have founded the 1stGEN@UNI project. It was recently launched with several focus group sessions for students attending their third year of high school.

After an initial phase, a series of seminars and interactive activities will follow for students. These activities have the specific aim of helping students understand that attending university can be a viable path and to highlight the positive impacts that studying and acquiring specific skills may have on their future. Later sessions will then focus more on Bocconi University in terms of its educational offer and career opportunities.
1stGEN@UNI participants who apply to Bocconi, are admitted and meet the requirements will be able to take advantage of various forms of financial aid, such as the “Una Scelta Possibile” program.

In his second year of the Bachelor of Science in Economia Aziendale e Management and recipient of a "Una Scelta Possibile" scholarship, Andrea Santoro participated in the very first stage of the student focus group. He witnessed that delicate stage leading up to the students’ choice: “In my third year of high school, I attended a University orientation event and a career day where I met people from the world of work,” he says. “All this opened my eyes, and in my fourth year I decided to take the Bocconi admissions test. Today I can say that I have a much better idea about the university experience than I did in the past.”

The 1stGEN@UNI project “strengthens Bocconi University's ongoing commitment to contributing to social mobility and cultural development throughout Italy,” explains academic coordinator Carlo Salvato. “The scheduled activities will introduce interested young people to university studies as a possible vocation for their future, at Bocconi or wherever their dreams and talent may lead them.”