Diversity, Equity and Inclusion

Family Firsts

First generation college students seek growth in OU’s School of Business Administration

School of Business Administration

icon of a calendarNovember 20, 2019

icon of a pencilBy Liz Lent

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Every student who attends the Oakland University School of Business Administration (SBA) sees it as a path to a better future. For students who are the first generation in their family to graduate from college, the opportunities shine even brighter.

For Joseph Babi, SBA ’12, Oakland offered an ideal blend of convenience and quality that allowed him to pursue his education while maintaining obligations to help at his family’s store. 

“My siblings and I were always encouraged by our parents to get our degrees,” says Babi, who witnessed his three older siblings earn Oakland business degrees as well. 

After graduating with a degree in accounting, Babi created an iOS app, Game Up Alarm Clock, that landed on top app charts nationally and internationally, leading to the launch of his own business, the Joseph Paul Digital Agency

“Without my accounting background from Oakland, I would not have had the knowledge or discipline to manage costs and plan future strategies to ensure the success of my app or agency,” Babi says. 

Clare Grzegorzewski, SBA ’19, found that OU offered a safe, welcoming environment on her journey toward an education.

“As a first-generation student, I didn’t even know where to begin. I was very intimidated 

by the application process and questioned myself on being cut out for this type of environment,” recalls Grzegorzewski. “When I visited OU, though, I just felt something click. For the first time, the whole thing wasn’t so scary.”

Now, as a management information systems major, distinguished scholarship recipient and peer tutor Grzegorzewski notes, “I got everything I could have ever hoped for and more at OU. I can say with absolute certainty that attending Oakland has made me the best version of myself.”

Explore possibilities found in the School of Business Administration at oakland.edu/business.

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