The First Scholars Program at the University of Kentucky seeks to improve the retention and graduation rates of first generation college students through scholarship funding, programming, and campus collaboration.
The First Scholars Program at the University of Kentucky in partnership with The Suder Foundation seeks to develop a national model center to serve students who are the first in their families to go to college.
The First Scholars Program at the University of Kentucky is a grant funded initiative sponsored by The Suder Foundation housed in the Office of Undergraduate Education. Created in June 2009, the program provides 20 one-year scholarships of $5,000 to first-time, full-time first generation Kentucky residents towards their undergraduate education renewable for up to four years. In addition to the scholarship, scholars are matched with a peer mentor, join a student organization, participate in service projects and educational workshops, and have the support of a dedicated full-time program coordinator.
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Martina Martin serves as the First Scholars Program Coordinator. In her role she coordinates and oversees the First Scholars selection process and ensures a smooth transition to the University upon selection. Martina is also responsible for creating and implementing programming (academic, personal, and career and leadership development) for and the monitoring and tracking of academic progress of all First Scholars.
Martina recently served as the Assistant Director/Athletic Academic Advisor for the University of Louisville’s Olga S. Peers Athletic Academic Center. She was responsible for overseeing academic support services for the Men’s and Women’s Swimming and Diving teams and Spirit Teams, as well as, coordinating the Houston-Bridgeman Fellows Degree Completion program. In addition, she served as co-advisor to the Student-Athletes of Color Combining Opportunity and Responsibility for Excellence (S.C.O.R.E.) organization and Chi Alpha Sigma College Student Athlete Honor Society.
Prior to the University of Louisville, Martina spent seven years within the University of Kentucky’s Center for Academics and Tutorial Services where she served as the CHAMPS Life Skills Coordinator and Tutor/Mentor Coordinator. In addition, she served as the Community Outreach Coordinator and Co-Advisor to the Student-Athlete Advisory Committee.Martina also spent two years at Eastern Kentucky University where she served as an Athletic Academic Advisor.
A native of Lebanon, Kentucky, Martina earned her bachelor’s degree in Physical Education: Athletic Training and master’s degrees in Physical Education: Sports Administration and Human Services: Student Personnel Services in Higher Education from Eastern Kentucky University.