The free conference – the only one of its kind in the 10-campus UC system – took just three days to fill after it was advertised.
Participants learned how to search for jobs, write winning resumes, network, negotiate job offers and salaries, locate internships and identify and celebrate their strengths as first-generation students.
A highlight of the event was the students' chance to interact with employers and alumni who also were the first college graduates in their families and now represent companies including Google, IBM, Microsoft, Amazon, General Electric and Yelp.
"I see this conference as having the potential to grow into an event for the entire UC system, because there is such demand for it," said 2015 Berkeley graduate Lonjino Lazcano, a consultant at Deloitte, a multinational professional services firm. "Students are hungry to be in an environment where people understand where they're coming from, to be in a room where it's safe to say, 'I don't know how to do this.'"