First-Gen Longhorns

Naomi T. Campa, Ph.D. smiling in a light blue button up accompanied by aqua jacket.

Meet Naomi T. Campa, Ph.D

February 28, 2024,

Dr. Campa is an assistant professor in the Department of Classics. She talked about the first-generation Longhorn experience as a faculty member.

What is your first-gen super power? 
Being first-gen and Hispanic, I have had different life experiences than most professors in my field, like working 40 hours a week as an undergrad. In the classroom, I think my superpower comes from that — understanding that students have many priorities while supporting them as they challenge themselves. In my research, it has allowed me to ask questions about ancient Greece without the same preconceived notions as others. 

How has being first-gen followed you after graduating from college? 
I felt like I have had to play “catch up” in a lot of ways. I have been lucky to find mentors to help me with navigating different stages of my career. My persistence in asking questions, looking for answers and reaching out for help didn’t hurt either. 

What advice would you give current First-Gen Longhorns? 
College is such a special time. You might have a career on your mind but take the time to enjoy the experience of being in such a unique setting — where your peers from all walks of life are engaged in thinking and learning about themselves and the world. Resources are out there for all kinds of study and financial help. Talk to your advisors and professors. Office hours are for YOU! 

First Gen Stories