FIND HOW YOUR STUDENT HAS GROWN
When a child goes to college, it’s a major life event. This passage can leave you wondering what to do as an “empty-nester” and your student trying to figure out how to run his or her life.
Here are some suggestions for surviving your student’s first semester at college:
Help with the move. This will ensure that your student arrives here equipped with his or her CD collection and a warm winter coat.
Cry in private. Your child is embarking on a grand adventure and you’re going back to work. Cry away. But smile bravely in front of your kid. He or she needs your support.
Provide a phone card. Hopefully your student will use it to call home.
Phone regularly, not constantly. The first week, call occasionally to see if your student needs anything, but avoid calling every day. You don’t want to smother your student.
E-mail. This is an easy way for students to communicate, especially when they’re busy with exams. It’s also cheaper than long-distance.
Send money. Students are always broke. A $20 bill tucked into a card can buy a couple of nights of dinner out or a movie and some popcorn.
Stay positive. Eventually everyone flubs a test or writes a less-than-stellar paper. Listen and commiserate. And if problems persist, encourage your student to see an academic advisor or seek tutoring.
Encourage campus involvement. Students tend to enjoy school more if they feel part of the community. One way to accomplish this is to participate in campus activities and organizations.
Mail something. Students love seeing letters and packages in their mailbox. Some homemade cookies or even a card can brighten a college student’s stressful week.
Pat yourself on the back. Many high school graduates never attend college and your child is enrolled in a school that prides itself on helping students succeed. Congratulations!