Four essential tips for parents of new college students

Sending a child off to college can create a windfall of emotions. From excitement, to nervousness, or even hesitation, the shift in the parenting dynamic can be difficult to navigate, but if done correctly, parents can help set the tone for their student and prepare them for long-term success.

Parents, here are some do’s and don’ts you can use right now as you discover this new chapter both in you and your students’ lives.

1. Don’t offer advice, offer resources

The most helpful thing you can do for your student is to learn about what is happening on campus, and then direct your child to those activities and services—like tutoring programs, counseling sessions and other opportunities. This way you are in the know but still provide your student the chance to make the decision ultimately on their own.

2. Don’t contact professors and administrators on their behalf

As hard as it may be, it’s time to let go. Instead of picking up the phone and calling professors or administrators, let your student use their own voice. We want students to leave as people who can enter the world and navigate it effectively. To build those skills of self-advocacy, students need to ask questions and ask for help when they need it.

3. Don’t ask them to come home too often

This is a tough one! We love our students and miss them dearly, but college is a time to meet new people, explore their surroundings and make friends—that’s hard to do when a student goes home each weekend. Both Lees-McRae and the High Country have so much to offer when it comes to events, activities, and places to explore. In fact, Lees-McRae was recently named the Top Adventure College in the Southeast. Encourage your student to take advantage of our beautiful location and discover why we love where we live so much.

4. Do send care packages

Students get tired and stressed, so sending a fun and/or useful care package is a great way to lift their spirits and remind them someone is thinking of them. Care packages don’t have to be extravagant, either. It can be as simple as a notebook before a test, or some of their favorite snacks right before a late night study session for finals.

Check out this recent interview Director of Campus Life and Student Engagement Hannah Finkelstein gave where she shared many of these tips on WCYB in Bristol, Virginia.

Watch now

By Nina MastandreaSeptember 07, 2018
FamiliesCampus LifeAcademics