PEGASUS Receives Grants to Expand Program

Money will provide 40 scholarships and hire more student mentors.

Written by Sarah Whetstone

The PEAGASUS program is focused on helping first-generation college students successfully transition to higher education and has proven track record of succeeding.

The PEGASUS program is focused on helping first-generation college students successfully transition to higher education and has a proven track record of succeeding.

Texas Tech University’s PEGASUS program received a total of $53,506 in two grants from the Texas Guaranteed Student Loan Corporation, a Texas non-profit corporation based in Round Rock. The Pioneers in Education: Generations Achieving Scholarships and Unprecedented Success (PEGASUS) program assists first-generation college students (FGC) on their transition from high school to higher education. PEGASUS will distribute $750 scholarships to 40 students, which will help pay tuition of 40 percent of PEGASUS participants; $23,506 will be used to expand the PEGASUS program by hiring more student mentors who, in turn, will be able to assist more students. The program builds an educational community by hiring Texas Tech students to mentor FGC students during their first year on campus. PEGASUS is designed to assist first-generation college students as they manage the variety of challenges unique to students without a family background in higher education. Each year, the incoming freshmen class is comprised of more than a quarter of first-generation students whose success in school is threatened by inadequate academic, psychological and financial preparation before entering college. In addition, statistics show that first-generation students have lower retention rates than students who are second or third-generation college students. PEGASUS strives to counter the obstacles facing students by encouraging education through outreach and recruitment, scholarships and individualized mentoring and advising to students who are the first in their families to go to college.