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First Generation Student Profile: Angie Garner-Sinjeokov BFA’23

by Olivia Muñoz, Dean of Students,

To continue the celebration of First Generation Student Success Day (Nov. 8), we are pleased to feature a few of Willamette’s outstanding first-generation students throughout this week.

Angie Garner-Sinjeokov
Angie Garner-Sinjeokov BFA’23

Angie Garner-Sinjeokov BFA’23
Pronouns: she/her
Hometown: Sierra Vista, Arizona

What has been your experience as a first generation college student?
It’s been a little daunting. I have no firsthand point of reference for how this is supposed to go. But it's also exciting to get to spearhead a whole new experience. It’s allowed me and my parents to bond over learning the process together, and has been really positive overall.

What activities are you involved in?
I serve as the PNCA Student Council Facilitator, which is similar to a president role. I’m also president of the Creative Writing Club, and am very involved with Student Life activities. We’re currently working on redecorating the student lounge.

Being a first generation college student is one part of your identity. What are other aspects about you that you think about as you navigate your academic journey?
I grew up in Argentina before moving to the United States, so there have been a lot of cultural differences in terms of interactions. For one, I’m coming from a more “touchy-feely” culture. I’m also neurodivergent. All of those combined have put things into perspective for me to try to be a better person than peers who alienated me when I was younger.

What strengths do first generation students bring to higher education?
Perspective. We know the gravitas of a college experience. You really get the sense of how much your parents, your parents’ parents, and you worked to get here. We are keenly aware of how important it is.

What do your future plans hold?
Hopefully, I will get my Masters in Writing, maybe even at PNCA! Eventually, I’d like to work in publishing, illustration, or education.

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