Starting a new venture requires the same confidence college students need to push through obstacles and complete their degrees. In fact, I would suggest that success on both fronts requires a bold ego with a balanced understanding of the world…and a fierce willingness to fight when necessary.

Many first-generation students do not have the the support and wisdom of friends and family who have gone to college before. In my experience, although they have overcome tremendous challenge to get to college, at the first sign of trouble (financial, personal, or academic), they waiver, believing they don’t belong at college. Well-meaning friends and family tell them to take a semester off, come home, go to the local community college, and it will all be better. They acquiesce and return home. They get a job and work to pay for college, then work to pay for bills and college is second. Then they become a part-time student and their degrees become third and fourth on a list of responsibilities. Sometimes they eventually finish. Sometimes they continue to persist. And sometimes they eventually stop taking classes altogether.

The twisted irony of it all is that these very same kids were the toughest and strongest. When there was no power at home, they found a place to get homework done late at night. When they needed rides for school activities and the family car was broken, they jumped on the bus. They stayed up late at night to work on projects until everything was perfect. They wrote college essays that made us cry. They persisted.

The goal of edfurther is to remove one of those barriers–the financial weight.

And to do that edfurther will be bold and have balanced humility–learning from peers, partners, and competitors while believing in something new. edfurther believes in the power of a community to invest in the next generation of leaders.

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