Objectives As the United States economy moves from a manufacturing to technology economy, the number of those jobs that require postsecondary education has increased. In an effort to ensure that the United States can compete in a global market it is imperative to ensure that minority youth are able to attend college. According to Bourdieu’s theoretical work, minority and lower class students do not have the social networks, cultural capital, and/or financial capital as their counterparts. These differences create hurdles when navigating the college application process. As a result, many students experience college undermatch. College undermatch occurs when a student has the credentials to attend a selective college, but does not (Smith et al, 2013). Instead, he or she may choose a community college or remain close to home at a less selective four-year university. However, Lareau (2015) highlights cultural guides or individuals who help upwardly mobile adults navigate institutions. Cultural guides can be teachers, coaches, ministers, or family friends. The goal of a cultural guide is to help prospective college students that are unaware of how to optimize the college application and financial aid process and increase exposure to colleges. MethodsTo explore this phenomenon, interviews were conducted with low income, first generation, native born, minority female students at a large public university located in the Southeast region of the United States. Students were asked about their college application experience and who helped them throughout the process. FindingsRespondents reveal the importance of having a cultural guide assist them with the college application and financial aid process. Respondents attest to the fact that their college application process and journey would have been different without the assistance of their cultural guide. Implications If education is to be a means for upward mobility, marginalized and minority students should be given the proper assistance and information in regards to the process of college selection, financial aid application, and navigating higher education.