First-Generation Students

Will You Be the First in Your Family to Go to College?

As a first-generation college student, you are among the first in your family to go to college. This is an incredible achievement, and it is something in which to take great pride! As a first-gen student, you will face unique challenges, but you will also have unique strengths and talents that will help you succeed and serve as a role model for future generations in your family.

More than 50% of Midwestern State University students are first-generation college students! As such, we understand the challenges you may face, and we are committed to providing the resources and support you need to thrive. You belong here, and we can't wait to see all the amazing things you will accomplish!


Of students at MSU Texas are first-generation college students


Students were accepted into the Priddy Scholars program this year


Average increase in earnings for those with a college degree vs. a high school diploma

What You Need to Know about the Application Process

Filling out the application itself is pretty easy. We collect applications through the ApplyTexas app, which can be used to apply to universities across Texas.  However, there are other aspects about the application process that you might have questions or concerns about. Please know that you can always reach out to the Admissions Office to speak with an admissions counselor for one-on-one support.

Before You Apply:
  • Visit campus. Visiting campus is the best way to get a sense of whether or not you will be comfortable at MSU Texas.
  • Speak with an admissions counselor. You have questions; we have answers. We love talking about MSU Texas and helping students like you decide if this is a good fit for you. We understand that you appreciate hearing both the good and the things that can cause struggles — we value your trust and feel a commitment to help you make a well-informed decision.
  • Look at the majors that we offer. With 60+ degree programs, pre-professional programs, and minors offered, chances are we offer a major in a field that interests you. Learn more about the hands-on opportunities available in the programs you are most interested in and start to plan where this degree may take you.
  • Explore ways to pay for college. College can be a hefty expense, but at MSU Texas we have many options to help make paying for college more manageable.
  • Check out our residence halls and learn more about student life. You are going to spend a lot of time on campus. As such, we hope you feel welcome into the MSU Texas community and find the same sense of home as the Mustangs before you.

What You Will Need to Apply

Below, you will find the core elements of your application to MSU Texas. For more information, visit Admissions.

Start the Application

If this will be your first time visiting the ApplyTexas application portal, you will need to set up your profile. Once your profile is complete, you are ready to start the application to MSU Texas.

Apply Today

Submit Scores & Transcripts

We will need official transcripts from your high school (you can request these from your guidance counselor). If you took dual credit courses, request your official transcript from the college or university from which you received credit. For more information, visit Admissions.

Note: MSU Texas is test-optional, meaning you do not have to submit ACT or SAT scores to be considered for admission.


Pay the Application Fee

You have the option to pay the $40 application fee through the ApplyTexas application portal.

Alternatively, you are able to pay this fee through TouchNet, our internal payment portal.

Submit Payment

Find Ways to Pay for College

We understand that as the first from your family to embark on the college journey, navigating the financial aspects of college can feel overwhelming. But rest assured that there are numerous resources available to support you.

Financial aid programs, scholarships, and grants are specifically designed to help students like you access higher education. From federal aid programs like Pell Grants to work-study opportunities, there are various avenues to explore. Additionally, it is worth considering part-time work, student loans, and community resources as potential sources of support.

Do not let financial barriers hold you back. And remember you are not alone, and we are here ready to assist you every step of the way.

Students working together while sitting outside near the Spirit of the Mustangs statue.

Texas Leadership Scholars

Midwestern State University is one of 24 institutions participating in the Texas Leadership Scholars program that is designed to recognize high-achieving, low-income students in Texas. Each year the program awards 250 scholarships that provide 100% of tuition and fees for all four years of their collegiate experience. Additionally, selected students also receive a stipend to cover the average cost of room and board.

Beyond the financial assistance, the program also provides benefits for living-learning opportunities, mentoring, and undergraduate research.

Mustangs Guarantee

Are you a first-time student, a Texas resident, Pell Grant eligible, and have a family combined annual adjusted gross income of $65,000 or less?

If so, the Mustangs Guarantee will cover the remaining balance of your tuition of 15+ credit hours each semester for up to four years.

Be Money Smart: Increase Your Financial Literacy

The Tutoring and Academic Support Programs (TASP) offers resources to help students like you learn how to budget and manage your money. Stay ahead of the curve for a lifetime of financial security.

Find Success and Support through Community

Starting off at college can be a bit of a culture shock. You are no longer walking into classrooms full of friends you've known for years. You might even have a newfound independence that you have not experienced before. Know that at MSU Texas, there is a "we" for you.

Check Out Student Life

Get Involved at MSU Texas

First-Generation Network

Being the first in your family to attend college, you might find that you and your family are all learning the ropes at the same time.

Here is where joining the First-Generation Network can help. Find fellow first-gen peers, faculty, and staff who are here to keep you informed of important news, dates, information, and opportunities across campus and the community.


FIRST2GO is your resource for the engagement and advocacy for first-generation students. Programming encourages student success at MSU Texas and preparation for your future career.

Ready to make the most of your college experience? Got goals, but not sure where to start? Through our workshops, success coaching and leadership opportunities FIRST2Go can help you find your path to success.

TRiO Student Support Services

The very idea of college can be scary, whether you are the first in your family to attend or otherwise. You have likely heard that college is going to be different and much harder. But it does not have to be.

From tutoring and workshops to career and financial management coaching, TRiO Student Support Services (SSS) is here to help you stay ahead of the curve in your classes and successfully navigate through college and beyond.

A laughing student enjoys a bungee activity during Finals Frenzy.

Have a Great First-Year Experience and Beyond

Enjoy a smooth and supported transition to college at MSU Texas. We will provide you with the resources and guidance you need to navigate the challenges and opportunities you will encounter during your fist year.

From informative orientation sessions and Mustangs Roundup to seminar courses through our First-Year Mustangs Adventure, College Connections, and Redwine Honors programs that enhance your study skills, time management, and career exploration, you will gain valuable tools for success.

Be empowered. Maximize your potential as a member of the Mustangs community and set the stage for a rewarding and fulfilling college experience.

It doesn't take long to get used to the campus. When you are here, everyone does their best to make sure you feel connected to some group on campus. I work in housing now, and I'm on the other side of the coin – helping other people get connected.

Jamar Thomas Jr., Class of 2025
Jamar Thomas Jr., Class of 2025
Major: Industrial Technology | Minor: Computer Science
McCoy College of Science, Mathematics & Engineering

Tutoring & Academic Support Programs (TASP)

Tutoring Opportunities

Located on the first floor of Moffett Library, TASP's Learning Center offers drop-in tutoring support for most general subject areas, including, but not limited to, writing, math, science, psychology, history, and foreign languages.

Meet one-on-one with a peer tutor to better understand the topics and concepts of your classes, identify your potential weaknesses, and come up with personal success strategies. Tutoring proves time and time again to be one of the best ways to improve and maintain higher grades.

Students are gathered inside Moffett Library, studying.

Academic Advising

Get the advice you need when you need it. Deciding what to major in and what classes to take is not always easy. That is where your academic counselor can step in to offer assistance. In your first couple of years at MSU Texas, your academic counselor will help you register for classes, but that's not all. As part of TASP, we often connect students like you with partners within TASP and across campus to help meet your academic goals and be successful.
Two students work together in Moffett Library during a study session.

Explore Majors

Have you decided what you want to major in? If not, we can help you with that!

Know that you do not need to commit to a major right now. With the aid of an academic counselor, you can explore your options while completing degree requirements!

Stay on Track

One of the primary reasons for academic advising is to help make sure that you are focused on completing your major (and minor) degree requirements in a timely manner.

Are You a Veteran or Dependent?

If you plan to apply your education benefits here at MSU Texas, we encourage you to contact Veterans Affairs soon after submitting your application. It will likely come as no surprise that there is a fair amount of forms and paperwork to submit, and we will be there every step of the way to make sure you have the resources you need to get it all taken care of.
Two United States Air Force members smile and give a thumbs up during an MSU Texas event.

We Care about Your Health, Wellness, and Safety

Your overall health, wellness, and safety are our top priority alongside academics. Being on a safe and healthy campus is crucial to providing a community that can thrive both academically and personally. As such, we provide a variety of resources and programs that promote wellness, reduce stress, and increase mental and physical health awareness. Gym facilities, mental health counseling programs, outdoor activities, and more – we have you covered. Come see for yourself, and experience the healthiest version of you at MSU Texas.

Explore Health, Wellness and Safety at MSU Texas

Take Advantage of Reduced Cost Dental Hygiene Care

Would you like to maintain your bright smile while being an important part of a fellow student's training for their career? The Gaines Hygiene Clinic at MSU Texas offers teeth cleaning, dental X-rays, fluoride, sealants, and plaque control tips.

Please note that the clinic's sole focus is on dental hygiene. If you are in need of a procedure not offered, the clinic will provide you with a referral to a licensed dentist.

A dental hygiene student performs a teeth cleaning.

Get Active at the Redwine Student Wellness Center

Whether you enjoy taking fitness classes or working out on your own by lifting weights, hitting cardio, running on an indoor track, or playing sports, we have you covered.

Reach New Heights with College Opportunities

Whether you have always been a star student or you are ready to reach new heights now, MSU Texas has firmly established itself as an institution that inspires its students to become self-motivated and impassioned learners.
A group of students are gathered, engaged in conversation, outside of the Dillard College of Business Administration.

Unlock Your Academic Potential

You are in good hands at MSU Texas. We want you to succeed, and that is why we provide a wide range of academic programs and resources ot help you achieve your goals. Do not hesitate to take advantage of everything we have to offer — we cannot wait to see all the amazing things you will accomplish!

Participate in the Redwine Honors Program

Are you looking for a learning experience that allows you to take your interests to the next level? The Redwine Honors Program at MSU Texas offers a distinctive study option to bring out the best in you.

Experience dynamic and enriched core and upper-level coursework and enjoy increased experiential learning opportunities such as study abroad, faculty-led research, and more.

Discover how pursuing the honors track at MSU Texas could be a rewarding path for you.

A group of smiling students gathered together with their professor at the Model United Nations event, representing the country of Nepal.
Five students walking through the quad stop to smile and hold up the Mustangs hand sign.

Will You Be a Priddy Scholar?

As a Priddy Scholar, you will have access to a wide range of academic and experiential learning opportunities to help you develop your skills, expand your horizons, and make a positive impact both on campus and in the community.

From research and creative projects to study abroad programs and internships, the possibilities are endless. And with a dedicated team of staff to support you every step of the way, you can be confident that you will have the resources and guidance you need to succeed.

The Priddy Scholars program has connected me with a variety of resources, and it has connected me with some of the best people I know. The Priddy Scholars is a gateway to a support system, lifelong friends, and an amazing mentor.

Victoria Martinez, Class of 2026
Victoria Martinez, Class of 2026
Major: Accounting
Dillard College of Business Administration

Get Involved on Campus

Getting involved on campus is one of the best ways to make the most of your college experience! From joining a student organization or club to volunteering at campus events, there are endless opportunities for you to connect with your peers and make a difference on campus.

We cannot wait for you to create lasting memories and have experiences that you will cherish for years to come!

A group of students in their MSU Texas Esports jerseys play a game in the Esports lounge.

First-Generation Students FAQs

What does it mean to be a first-generation student?

Being a first-generation student means that you and your siblings are the first in your immediate family to pursue a college education. As a first-generation student, you may face unique challenges and opportunities as you navigate the college experience, often without the guidance and familiarity that comes from having family members who have gone through the process before. However, being a first-generation student can also be a source of pride and resilience as you blaze a trail for future generations in your family.

I need help with the application and financial aid processes. Who can I talk to?

While you are navigating the admissions and financial aid processes, you should reach out to your admissions counselor.

Are there any scholarship or financial aid opportunities that are specifically for first-generation students?

The Priddy Scholars program is a competitive scholarship+ program that is uniquely limited to first-generation students. Learn more about the Priddy Scholars program and check your eligibility.

MSU Texas is part of the Texas Leadership Scholars program that awards 250 scholarships to students across the state. The scholarship provides 100% of tuition and fees for all four years of the collegiate experience. Visit the Texas Leadership Scholars for eligibility and application.

Once I am a student at MSU Texas, who should be my first line of contact when I do not know who or what office to connect to?

Once you have enrolled, continue to communicate with your academic advisor or our MOSAIC office to help answer your questions. Before long, you will build strong connections across campus.

What services are available specifically for first-generation students?

FIRST2GO, part of MOSAIC, is especially designed to help first-generation students. They will provide resources and advocacy for students such as yourself.

TRiO Student Support Services are available for first-generation students. They provide a wide variety of support services such as study skills, personal counseling, academic advice and assistance, tutoring, cultural events, academic workshops, career services, and activities designed foster enrollment in graduate programs. You can also access a quiet study lab and make use of their computer lab. All SSS participants are paired with an upper division peer mentor to help navigate MSU Texas.

If you are accepted into The Priddy Scholars program, you will receive additional guidance and resources available to you.

Can I receive guidance on selecting a major and career path?


Your academic counselor is here to help you talk through your major and minor options and keep you on track to graduate. Additionally, you can connect with the Counseling Center to schedule career counseling appointments.

How can I access resources for personal and emotional support?

The Counseling Center offers free services and resources (including online resources) and is available to all current MSU Texas students. Call 940.397.4618 during business hours to schedule an appointment.

Are there resources available to help me find internships, job opportunities, or help me graduate school guidance?

There are many resources to help you identify internship, career, and graduate school opportunities.

At the highest level, you can reach out to the Career Management Center or explore options on MustangsHIRE. (Note, you will not have access to MustangsHIRE until a week after you have registered for classes.)

Other options include:

Last Modified: 06/18/2024