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Welcome to Carthage!

First in the Family

2019 First in the Family participants and mentors

The First in the Family (FIF) program helps incoming first-generation students connect to campus and receive important information to help navigate their college experience. A first-generation student is any student whose parents or guardians have not completed a bachelor’s degree.

2019 FIF student activities

In lieu of an in-person pre-orientation due to restrictions from COVID-19, all incoming first-generation students will receive virtual content from the First in the Family program over the summer, with a mix of pre-recorded presentations and webinars. One virtual session will be sent out each week from June 15 to Aug. 10. 

Incoming first-generation students are welcome to sign up for a first-generation student mentoring program. Returning first-generation sophomores, juniors, and seniors will serve as mentors, helping incoming first-generation students navigate the start of the semester. Incoming students will receive their mentor assignment by mid-August. Mentors will schedule in-person get-togethers and mentor/mentee events throughout the first semester to help them meet other first-generation students.

Registration is required, as there are limited spots available.


Please note: The application for Fall 2020 registration closed on Monday, July 20th. Please contact us at the email or phone number below if you have any questions.


Contact us at 262-551-5716 or

First-generation student virtual summer series

Session #1: Advising 101 - Learn about the advising and registration process for a first-year student in their fall semester. Get more information and support resources on campus that help students build a strong foundation for success. Presented by Joseph Towey and Anna Thompson from the Center for Student Success.

Session #2: College Lingo & Concepts - First-generation Carthage staff from offices across campus provide definitions and examples terms and processes common to higher education to help first-gen students better understand the college experience. Presented by Rocco LaMacchia from the Admissions Office, Trevor Jung from the Aspire Center, and Brandon Porter from the Office of the Registrar.

Session #3: First-Generation Faculty Webinar - Five faculty members across campus shared about their own personal experiences as first-generation college students and answered questions from students about beginning college. Watch the recorded webinar to learn some tips and get some advice for being successful as a first-generation student. Panelists: Katherine Hilson, Assistant Professor of Sociology and Criminal Justice, Ed Montanaro, Associate Professor of Modern Languages and Economics, Ed Kawakami, Assistant Professor of Music and Director of Orchestral Activities, Al Klingenberg, Associate Professor of Mathematics, and Karin Sconzert, Associate Professor of Education, Education Department Chair, and Broad Field Social Science Program Director.

Session#4: First-Generation Student Webinar - Mentors from the First-Generation Student Mentoring Program who are current first-gen students spoke about their experiences at Carthage and offered advice and tips while answering questions from incoming students. Watch the recorded webinar to learn more! Panelists: Mara Schwartz, ’21, Steve Machado, ’22, and Matthew Colinelli, ’22. 

Session #5: Supporting Diverse Students at Carthage - Carthage Assistant Dean of Students and Director of Equity and Inclusion Roger Moreano and students Ronny Onano, ’21, Grayson Breen, ’21, Sareena Volkman, ’21, and Sandra Masibayi, ’21 welcome First in Family students to Carthage! Learn why students love Carthage College and the support for equity and inclusion on campus!

Session #6: Leading at Carthage and Beyond - Learn about leadership development and opportunities to get involved with leadership opportunities. Presented by: Liz Snider, Assistant Dean of Students and Director of Student Involvement!

Session #7: Virtual Campus Resources Scavenger Hunt - Take the virtual resource scavenger hunt quiz to learn about the services and support offered by a number of different campus offices. Building familiarity with these services now will allow you to utilize them effectively and appropriately from the very first day of the semester! Offices on the scavenger hunt include the Center for Faith & Spirituality, the Registrar’s Office, the Office of Public Safety, the Office of Student Financial Services, the Division of Student Affairs central office, the Office of Residential Life, and the Health & Counseling Center.

  • Quick Facts

    • Carthage is named a Best Midwestern College by The Princeton Review (2021), a designation given to only 25 percent of four-year schools.

    • The Tower, Carthage’s newest residence hall, provides some of the best views on campus — if not in the Midwest! In addition to #carthageviews of the lake from seven stories up, residents enjoy suite-style living and two floors of shared campus spaces for gaming, cooking, group meetings, or quiet studying. Learn more about all housing options.

    • You’re going to need brain fuel. Grab a morning coffee and a snack and Starbucks or Einstein Bros. Bagels. Later, meet friends at “The Caf,” where the specials change daily but the staples are constant, or swing through “The Stu” for wings, a burrito, or a sub. A new option, Carthage Cash, even covers some off-campus meals.

    • More than 90% of Carthage alumni report that they have secured a job or are continuing their studies six months after graduation. Visit The Aspire Center.

    • 91% of employers say critical thinking, communication, and problem-solving skills matter more than your major when it comes to career success. Learn more about how the liberal arts prepare you for a successful career.

    • Lots of schools wear the four-year label. Carthage stands behind it. More than 90% of Carthage graduates earn their degrees in four years. Learn more

    • Oscars. Emmys. Tonys. Golden Globes. The playwrights we’ve brought in have them. Each year, the Carthage Theatre Department commissions an original script by a renowned playwright for its New Play Initiative. Carthage students then work with the writer to stage it. 

    • Carthage has ranked as a top Fulbright producer for four of the past five years. Read about Carthage Fulbright winners.

    • Things look new at Carthage because they are. Our science center, student union, athletic and recreation center, and numerous residence halls have all been constructed or newly renovated in the last 15 years.

    • Carthage offers majors, minors, and concentrations in more than 50 areas of study, from marketing to neuroscience, nursing to music theatre.

    • Our Summer Undergraduate Research Experience offers select students a research budget, one-on-one mentoring with a professor, and 10 weeks of analyzing, deciphering — and getting paid.

    • So the lake is kind of a focal point, but there’s a lot more to love about our campus — like the fact that our more than 80-acre campus is also an arboretum and wildlife sanctuary. Focused on keeping campus lush forever, we plant between 50 and 75 new trees every year from a variety of species.

    • Carthage was founded in 1847. That’s more than 170 years of leaders, makers, and go-getters going out and going forth. Read more about Carthage’s rich history.

    • More than 90 percent of students receive financial aid. Carthage awards more than $20 million in scholarship and grant assistance. That includes $5.5 million in competitive scholarships in business, mathematics, science, languages, the fine arts, leadership, and overall academic strength. Learn what’s available.

    • Abraham Lincoln was an early Trustee of the College, and U.S. Secretary of State John Hay was a Carthage alum. The two still have a proud place on our campus. Spend some time with them in our Sesquicentennial Plaza. On warm days you’ll find professors leading their classes here.

    • Come to Carthage; hear yourself think — think … think …
      Legend has it that Sesquicentennial Plaza holds a perfect echo. Just stand with both your feet on the “1847,” face Straz, and start talking. “You’re the only one who can hear you, but you’ll be crystal clear,” promises English and theatre alumna Mikaley Osley.

    • Our Great Lake provides Carthage students with some amazing views. Think classes on the beach, lake views from the lab, and sunrises from your dorm room. “I love waking up in the morning with the sun shining off the lake. Nothing compares to the view in the morning,” recalls biology and neuroscience major Ann O’Leary.

    • Carthage awards up to 35 Presidential Scholarships each year, which range from $22,000 up to full tuition. Learn more.

    • For a full decade, NASA has selected Carthage students to conduct research aboard its zero-gravity aircraft. Lately, the stakes have risen. A team of underclassmen is grinding to prepare a tiny but powerful Earth-imaging satellite for launch to the International Space Station. Learn more about the space sciences at Carthage

    • Carthage is the only college or university in the Midwest where every freshman takes a full-year sequence of foundational texts of the Western intellectual tradition. Learn about Intellectual Foundations.

    • With a student-faculty ratio of 13:1, your professors will know who you are. They will also know who you want to be — and how to get you there. Meet our faculty.

    • There are more than 130 student organizations on campus, from Amnesty International to Fencing to Frisbee, Chem Club to Stand Up Comedy. See how easy it is to get involved.

    • True story: There are more than 27 art galleries, a dozen museums, and nine theatres within 25 miles of Carthage. Some highlights: The nationally recognized Racine Art Museum, the world-renowned Art Institute of Chicago, and the Milwaukee Art Museum. Learn more about our location.

    • What’s better than one professor? Two professors. What’s better than two professors? Two professors from totally different fields teaching a single class. There’s debate. Discussion. Differing perspectives. This is where the magic happens. That’s why every student takes a Carthage Symposium.

    • You can’t hide here — not with only 17 other students in the classroom with you. That’s going to be rough some mornings. But later, when you’re able to argue your point of view thoughtfully, express your opinions succinctly, and meet challenges head-on, without fear … Yep, you’ll thank us.

    • Carthage is ranked in the Top 5 in the country for student participation in short-term study abroad. Every J-Term, hundreds of students travel all over the world on faculty-led study tours. Imagine a month in Sweden, Rome, Cuba, Senegal, India, Japan …