First Generation College Student Loans in Maryland

What People Say

FGCB is Family

"First Generation College Bound has helped me monumentally, they have assisted me through much of the hardships I was having. They provided invaluable information about college that really educates the people involved. Many parents have not gone to college and many students are lost about the college process themselves which is part of the reason why some just do not attend and the ignorance about the college process just continues. I come from a single-parent household and my mom did not go to college. Although my father did, he is no longer around, which left us in a predicament. First Generation College Bound alleviated the stress that I felt. Their seminars have proven immensely helpful and they have greatly assisted me during my endeavors and because of them I am now in college and working hard to be the best that I can be so I can ultimately make those that believe in me proud, especially my mom. I could never forget the family that I have come to know and appreciate greatly, First Generation College Bound."

Michael Oye-Adeniran

– FGCB College Student attending Howard Community College

Hoping to influence youth like you did for me

“I wanted to take this time to say THANK YOU for everything you did for me and everything you continue to do for the youth of Laurel and the surrounding area. Your leadership motivated me to be the best person I could be. My hope is that I may influence youth (even if it is just one) as you did with me."

John Wilson

– FGCB College Graduate from Frostburg State University

An opened door for opportunity

"FGCB has been instrumental in helping us explore options in a world of diversity and prospect. More options provide more probabilities. We consider it a privilege to be part of such a reciprocal and gratifying process."

Nathalie and Christian Polanco

–Siblings that have benefitted from the College Access Program

Mere words cannot express our gratitude

“FGCB helped me and my family understand the college acceptance procedures; a complicated and misunderstood process while everyone around me persuaded me to be "realistic" and apply to other schools. However, through diligence, tenacity and perseverance, FGCB assisted us with attending the school of our choice and for this, we are eternally grateful."

Maame and Sarah Amoyaw

–Siblings that have benefitted from our College Access Program

A family of achievers

"The program generates a blanket of help and support similar to that of a "domino effect," the triumph regenerates from generation-to-generation in our family starting from the eldest sibling to the youngest."

Erinayo, Olawale and Olakunle Soniregun

–Siblings that have benefitted from the College Access Program

Nothing short in abundance and rewards

"FGCB houses a wealth of resources that is advantageous to all college-bound students. Mr. Fisher and his team gave us hope and set high expectations that were essential for enrolling in college. FGCB has placed us on a phenomenal journey beyond belief! Nothing short in abundance and rewards."

Cynthia and Lacreesha Tyner

–Parent and FGCB college student at Bowie State University

The circle of giving

"Engaging youth in a worthwhile manner through assistance and guidance in the college bound process is rare and the benefits of FGCB are incalculable. Anytime a program can aid in one’s advancement through life and instill confidence through independent learning, it’s an entity that should be supported.” 

Connell Cuffie

Director of philanthropy, Jersey Mike's Subs

A wonderful organization

“First Generation College Bound is a wonderful hands-on organization that has been working for 20 years assisting students and their families – preparing them for college and helping them with the often-confusing application and financial aid process. It has made a tremendous impact on many, many students and their families.”

Janice Doyle

Chief of staff for the chancellor of the University System of Maryland and former FGCB board member

College student at any age

“I am so grateful for the dedication and all the hard work of FGCB program director Raymond Harrod! I thank him for answering EVERY email, returning EVERY phone call and for advising me EVERY step of the way. Without his help, neither one of my daughters would be enrolled in college right now. I am especially thankful for FGCB’s Annual Celebration. I have always wanted to go back to school and complete my education. When I was younger, I was a hard-headed know-it-all. As a result, I didn’t go past the 10th grade. I never attended a school dance, prom or any of the things that make for good memories and stories to pass down to your children. I did get my GED and I’m proud of that, but I never experienced walking across a stage in a cap and gown to receive a diploma. I want to have that experience, and the Annual Celebration program helped me to make up my mind to face all my fears and insecurities and go for it. I just finished completing my FAFSA and I will be attending Washington Bible College in the fall. Even though I’m not a teen, I’ll consider myself a FGCB member because I was on the fence until last night. If Mr. Joseph Fisher’s mom could get a GED at 52, I can become a college student at 47!”

Lori Thomasson


Premier youth mentoring program

“Joe Fisher is a proven, dynamic leader who has made a career of helping youth realize and even exceed their potential. Through his leadership, First Generation has grown into Prince George’s County’s premier youth mentoring program.”

Tom Dernoga

Prince George’s County Council Member, District 1

Provide access to all tools and recources

“FGCB is a very high-touch, hands-on organization. It doesn’t just throw a bunch of information at the students and their families; it holds their hands through the process to make sure they have access to all the tools and the resources they need. It’s remarkable.”

Anne Moultrie

Associate vice chancellor for communications, University System of Maryland

Role model for the next generation

“I don’t think that I would be where I am now if FGCB hadn’t helped me. Being the first one in my family to go to a school like the University of Maryland, my family is very proud of me. I feel like I’m a role model for the younger generation. It makes me feel like if I have achieved what I have done so far, I can achieve more. Now I’m thinking about going to grad school.”

Cindy Cruz

–Daughter of El Salvadoran parents

Strongest advocates I’ve ever seen for students

“I have not worked with any person who is any more professional and more caring about the population he serves than Joe Fisher. Joe serves as a mother-father-sister-brother to all the students in his program. He’s called me late at night, he’s called me early in the morning. He’s one of the strongest advocates I’ve ever seen for students, not only in trying to get them admitted but also in trying to get them the financial resources to be able to go to school.”

Don Kiah

Former Bowie State University assistant vice president for enrollment management

Students that have beaten the odds

“Of all the graduations I attend, the one hosted by First Generation College Bound is the most moving. These are the students that have beaten the odds, followed their hearts, believed that they could become the first in their families to earn a college degree. For 20 years Joe Fisher and FGCB have been the North Star for many hundreds of kids, beginning in elementary school and staying with them through matriculation from college. You cannot help but support a program like FGCB!”

H. Walter Townshend II

President and CEO, Baltimore/Washington Corridor Chamber of Commerce and FGCB board member

The teachers are wonderful

“The teachers at the (FGCB) Homework Club are wonderful. They helped my daughter, Ashley, a lot in subjects such as history. She brought her grades up to B’s, and now she’s receiving A’s. Ashley has gotten a full ride to McDaniel College.”

Cora Chase


Tremendous influence on our young citizens

“First Generation College Bound has had a tremendous influence on our young citizens in their efforts to improve the quality of their lives by continuing their education. Many of these young citizens would not have had the opportunity to go forward without the guidance and encouragement they have received from this valuable and worthwhile program.”

Craig A. Moe

Mayor of Laurel

Will get you towards your goal

“(Joe Fisher) was another father figure in my life. He invited me to chamber of commerce dinners with all these people who owned huge businesses. I’ve also watched him mingle with friends of mine who had problems paying rent, allowing them to stay in his house while they went to high school. What he was willing to do to make sure we got to that goal was just phenomenal.”

Reginald Black

–Marine Science Master’s Graduate at The University of Maryland Eastern Shore