College Success: Persistence and Retention of Upward Bound Low-Income First-Generation Students During Their First Semester

Date of Award


Document Type

Research Project

Degree Name

Master of Education (MEd)


Educational Leadership


There is growing interest in the TRIO Upward Bound community regarding persistence and retention for alumni who are enrolled in post-secondary institutions. There is limited research explaining actions, attributes, behaviors and strategies of low-income and first-generation students and their persistence and success during their first semester of college. Qualitative data was gathered for this study. Upward Bound alumni from the University of Maine at Presque Isle completed a survey and one-on-one interviews were conducted. The purpose of this study was to examine factors that cause Upward Bound students who are classified as low-income and first-generation not to matriculate beyond the first semester of college. Once students are at the college level, it is difficult to predict their smoothness of their transition and academic success. My research explored how Upward Bound students face retention issues, especially during their first semester of college. This study was able to recognize which factors are included in the college success of low-income and first-generation students.


Affiliation: The University of Maine at Presque Isle- Trio College Access Services/Upward Bound

Cohort: Aroostook Cohort