Mercer Firsts

Join a community of trailblazers

Starting the first year of college is an exciting accomplishment for all Mercerians, but for first-generation college students, this experience can be especially meaningful. Mercer recognizes that you will face unique experiences as you begin this journey, and we look forward to supporting you.

The Mercer Firsts Program is a community of first-year, first-generation students committed to attaining success at Mercer. The program connects each participant with an experienced mentor, a community of support, and guidance throughout the first year of college.

Important 2023-2024 program dates

  • Deadline to Register | Tuesday, August 1
  • Mercer Firsts Kickoff | Wednesday, August 30, 5:00-7:00 p.m.
  • Mentor/Mentee Meet & Greet | Wednesday, September 6, 5:00-6:00 p.m.
  • September Workshop | Thurday, September 21, 5:00-7:00 p.m.
  • October Workshop | Thursday, October 19, 5:00-7:00 p.m.
  • End of Semester Celebration | December 2023
  • February Workshop | February 2024
  • March Workshop | March 2024
  • End of Year Celebration | April 2024

Additional pop-up events and celebrations will take place throughout the year.


Please contact Walter Fuller, Coordinator of Student Success, at 478.301.2490 or  for more information.

Mercer Firsts Program

Frequently asked questions

Who will my mentor be?

The Office for Student Success will pair you with a Mercer faculty or staff member. Your program registration form asks questions that allow us to get to know you a little more and gives you the opportunity to voice your preferences for your mentor match.

When will I find out who my mentor is?

You will be introduced to your mentor during the Mentor/Mentee Meet & Greet event in September.

How long will I participate in the program?

The program runs for the length of your first year at Mercer. It kicks off in late August and concludes in mid-April. You are encouraged to keep in touch with your mentor after the conclusion of the program, but there are no formal requirements to do so.

What is the time commitment like for this program?

The first year of college is a learning process in terms of how to manage time, so we have intentionally designed Mercer Firsts to avoid imposing a heavy commitment or burden on your schedule. Each event or workshop throughout the year is between one and two hours long. You’re required to attend the Mercer Firsts Kickoff, the Mentor/Mentee Meet & Greet, and three workshops. You are encouraged to communicate with your mentor throughout the year and meet with them at least once a month. The date, time, and location of these meetings is up to each individual mentor/mentee pair.

Is there a cost to participate?

No, there is no cost to participate in Mercer Firsts.

How is Mercer Firsts different from other programs offered for students?

Mercer is pleased to offer a network of support and programs with which first-generation students can choose to engage. The Mercer Firsts Program is the only opportunity on campus specifically tailored for first-generation students that offers one-on-one mentor pairing with someone who has already completed college.

What kinds of things can a mentor help me with?

You may find it's helpful to talk with your mentor about topics such as:
  • Your social transition to college
  • Your academic transition to college
  • Your strategies for success
  • Life in general, knowing that you always have a resource on campus who is available to help you

Who is eligible to participate?

This is an invitation-only program for first-year, first-generation college students. Invitations are sent out during the summer before a student’s first year.