Seniors at the University of Kentucky are getting ready for graduation on Sunday.
One graduate told ABC36 that the walk across the stage isn’t just a first for him, but also his entire family.
Anthony Cadle is the first person in his family to graduate college and is also the first graduate of UK’s First Scholars program.
The program accepts 20 students a year. It offers $5,000 scholarships and mentoring to participants, who are all first generation college students.
“When they come to college, everything is different and there’s not someone in their family that can guide them through the process,” said Matthew Deffendall, director of First Generation Initiatives at UK. “What we try to do is fill that gap and be that extra sense of support for those students.”
Cadle said without the support he received through First Scholars, he might not have made it to graduation.
“I would say it’s like bowling with the guard rails up,” Cadle said. “You’re going to throw the ball and you may not get a strike. But you’re going to hit a pin because they’re going to be there to make sure you’re aiming in the right direction.”
Cadle said he’s proud to see his younger brothers following in his footsteps, hoping to one day graduate from UK, as well.
Cadle has accepted an internship in Washington D.C. this summer and will be attending graduate school at UK next year.