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First-Gen Voices

Raised toward our $6,000 Goal
73 Donors
Project has ended
Project ended on June 17, at 11:55 PM PDT
Project Owners

First-Gen Voices

Hello and welcome to our Zotfunder page! The First-Gen Voices is a fundraising effort from Lucid, UCI’s first-gen journal of writing and art. Now going into its third annual issue, Lucid continues to expand its mission to support first-gen students by providing community writing and podcasting workshops, free recording equipment rentals, internship opportunities, and prize money incentive to publish. 

Unlike most other creative writing publications, Lucid is trying to incentivize students who would not think to submit their creative work because they associate publication with professionalization. In our outreach efforts, we often hear from students that their work is not “good enough” for publication. In an informal survey we asked students if they would be more incentivized to submit their work if they were paid for it. They said yes. 

Because our mission is to provide much needed material and mentorship support to the average first-generation college student at UCI, we are seeking $6,000 to cover the costs of an internship and prize money for our student contributors, many of whom continue to participate in Lucid community building efforts long after their work is published! 

A unique collaboration between first-gen students and first-gen faculty, Lucid was started by two first-gen lecturers in the Composition Program to empower first gen students and help raise awareness about the unique challenges faced by first-gen college students, including the need for mentors who can identify with their experiences. 

Lucid’s first and second issues brought together students from all over campus, majoring in fields as diverse as public health, engineering, biology, journalism, and art. Their stories explore many of the topics common to first-generation college students: generational trauma and wealth gaps, lack of access to health care, and the dominant narratives that stigmatize and harm vulnerable communities. But these are also beautiful stories about deep family bonds, about love, empowerment, and hope.  

For the first issue, we asked students to select and read excerpts from their work.

Not only do first gen students contribute their work to the journal, but contributing students have been active on social media to help promote Lucid, assisted with fundraising, participated in Lucid workshops, and utilized Lucid recording equipment for their classwork. 

Alejandro Cabrera-Maldonado, Intern: Lucid has recently hired a first-gen intern, freshman Alejandro Cabrera-Maldonado. Alejandro is an undeclared first-year, first generation college student at UCI. He commutes from the city of El Monte, California. While he pursues his education, he continues to work as a mentor at El Monte and South El Monte High Schools where he holds college and financial aid workshops, while offering guidance and support to students as they pursue higher education. Through his work, his commitment to excellence, and his newly appointed position as the intern for the Lucid journal, Alejandro has become a proud advocate for fellow first-generation students in his community. His goal is to be the kind of person he needed when he was younger. We are thrilled and grateful to have such a talented writer and first-gen activist working with Lucid this year!

Rachael Collins, Lead Editor: Rachael is a proud first-generation college student and lecturer in the Composition Program at UCI. In an effort to support the many first-generation college students she teaches in her writing courses and to showcase their beautiful work, she co-founded Lucid, a journal of first-generation undergraduate student writing and art at UCI. For many of her students, Rachael’s office in HIB 316 is a home away from home where they come for snacks and chats. Stop by! 

Jackie Way, Managing Editor: Jackie is a first-gen college student and lecturer in UCI's Composition Program.  As a writing teacher, she believes in teaching academic writing rules so that students can break them with flair; she strives to help her students take pride in their own voices and understand the process of writing as a process of self-empowerment.  This is her first year working on Lucid.

With the help of the Humanities Center and the UCI Libraries, Lucid has expanded its community-building and support efforts by hosting workshops on zine-making, blackout poetry, and podcasting. We’ve recently started an equipment rental program in which students can rent recording equipment for classes and creative work. 

Your generous gifts will go directly to first gen students participating in Lucid’s ongoing community building and support efforts. Thank you!

Choose a giving level


Lucid Friend

Thank you for your gift of $10 to help Lucid support first gen students at UCI!


Student Supporter

Thank you for your gift of $25 to help Lucid support first gen students at UCI!


Generous Friend

Thank you for your generous gift of $100 to help raise the volume of first-gen voices at UCI!


Blue and Gold Scholar

Your generous gift of $250 contributes to Lucid’s efforts to support first gen students and grow our first gen community! Your donation will help pay our student contributors for their participation in Lucid’s Worldbuilding Project!

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