In colleges and universities across the country underrepresented minority students, first generation students, and transfer students face an uphill battle. The starting circumstances and college experiences of these students are not equitable and are not conducive to student success. Barriers and challenges that are closely associated with these intersecting student populations include structural racism, colorblindness, reduced generational wealth and income, mental health issues, stereotype threat, the imposter phenomenon, a fixed mindset, microaggressions, implicit bias, intellectual marginalization, increased family responsibilities, inadequate pre-college preparation, cultural mismatch, transfer shock, information overload, stigmatization, and social isolation. Collectively these challenges result in reduced feelings of belonging, increased stress and anxiety, and reduced engagement and performance, which leads to the achievement gaps observed between affected students and their unaffected peers. Acknowledging the reality and seriousness of these problems is essential if our goal is to allow all students to thrive and be successful.