Student News

Application open for Explore First: Careers, Cultures and Connections

Watch UK Students Travel, Learn and Grow Through Explore First

LEXINGTON, Ky. (Nov. 27, 2023) — Applications are now being accepted for Explore First: Careers, Cultures and Connections, a unique education abroad program designed exclusively for first-gen students at the University of Kentucky.

First-generation students at UK, defined as a student for whom neither parent or guardian has completed a four-year degree, can apply here.

Explore First, a joint collaboration between Education Abroad & Exchanges and UK’s Office for Student Success, launched in the summer of 2023, taking four cohorts of 15 students to either London or Dublin. The program is focused on career-readiness, with students visiting some of the leading employers around the globe including Accenture, Diageo, Greystar, Alltech and more.

“Explore First was a life-changing experience for me,” said Rylyn Risenbeck, a junior neuroscience and psychology major who went to Dublin this past summer on Explore First. “I loved exploring Ireland and learning about different career skills with a community of other first-generation students. Any interested first-generation student should apply. You won’t regret it!” 

Explore First is scheduled for Session 1, running May 17-June 8, 2024, and Session 2, running June 7-29, 2024.

Interested students can click here to apply by Dec. 4.

Arden Barnes | UK Photo.

As the state’s flagship, land-grant institution, the University of Kentucky exists to advance the Commonwealth. We do that by preparing the next generation of leaders — placing students at the heart of everything we do — and transforming the lives of Kentuckians through education, research and creative work, service and health care. We pride ourselves on being a catalyst for breakthroughs and a force for healing, a place where ingenuity unfolds. It's all made possible by our people — visionaries, disruptors and pioneers — who make up 200 academic programs, a $476.5 million research and development enterprise and a world-class medical center, all on one campus.   

In 2022, UK was ranked by Forbes as one of the “Best Employers for New Grads” and named a “Diversity Champion” by INSIGHT into Diversity, a testament to our commitment to advance Kentucky and create a community of belonging for everyone. While our mission looks different in many ways than it did in 1865, the vision of service to our Commonwealth and the world remains the same. We are the University for Kentucky.