Every Parent Should Know...
This is just a beginning. It's pretty likely that your son or daughter will have a few suggestions of their own.
Every College Parent Should Know...
- the importance of finding, downloading,
filling out, and printing a FAFSA form and why.
- See http://www.fafsa.ed.gov/ for more details
- that when your child calls with a problem,
they are not asking you to solve it, just listen
to their dilemma. Since they’re opening up,
avoid “how did this happen, how could you…?”
Instead encourage them to consider the
alternatives and think about what is their gut
- that your child is well prepared and that
you did a good job. Don’t expect them to handle
things as you would. The dazed look on their
face is not the result of failing to know what
to do; it’s the result of struggling with how to
communicate with you without triggering any
- growth requires making mistakes. We have to
let them make mistakes. A big part of college is
making choices, wrong ones, and then recovering
- that in most cases parents don’t find out
until after the fact. This is good experience,
they make a mistake, suffered the repercussions,
but…then solved the problem themselves. Growth
occurs… we laugh about it together after the
- that your student is not leaving you. They
are just going off to school, they will be
coming home from time to time, and they are
still apart of your family.
- NOT to make changes that make it look like
your are continuing your family life without
- to let your student try to do things on his
or her own. Every time they call and say that
they need money, let them try to figure out how
to manage. It’s the only way that they will
learn to be independent and responsible—after
all, they are now mini-adults.
- that sending your first child off to college
is not as heartbreaking as you expect it to be.
With the ease of communication, be it e-mail, or
free nights and weekend cell phone minutes, you
might find you have more real conversations with
them while they’re away at school than you did
before they left!
- the UW-L campus. Become familiar with it
before your student goes there. It will make you
much more comfortable with your student going
away to college.
- not to be surprised if you don’t see much of
them the first time they come home.
- that his or her college freshman is scared.
- what options are available for financial
aid. Do some research and help your student
decide on what’s best for them. Don’t assume
they will handle it themselves because in the
end, they need your help.
- that their kids still need their love and
concern, but the way we express it might need to
- their child’s roommates, campus friends, and
class schedule if possible. Not for snooping,
but for better understanding of your child’s
- to offer to take friends/roommates for
coffee or pizza when you visit. It will be a
future conversation starter.
- to be flexible. This means an urgent mid-day
call about where to find shoelaces or some such
item, and then a last minute cancellation on
dinner when he or she is home to visit. It gets
Every Parent Should Have...
- Internet at
them to UW-L.
- enough money
- access to
and credit card
account. Set up
before your drop
them off. There
will be less
them to get a
credit card on
cards, etc. if
- the time to
listen to your
them use you as
times they have
need to talk to
someone to vent
getting to talk
about it makes
them come up
with their own
just need to
talk about it.
- a good cell
phone plan and
the nearest UPS
drop off site.
- email, and
use it often.
student set up a
college, or help
them set up and
learn to use an
account as soon
as they arrive
- a ticket for
at least one
Eagle game the
first year. Take
your student and
all out for
- plans to go
to Parents and
some of their
an event with your
take them out
- the email
address to sign
up for the
not tell you
they have made.
Let them know
you’re there if
they need you.
- a contingency plan in place for reaching their students in an emergency, and if they are out of state, a plan to get them home. In our post 9-11 world it is a good discussion to have. It might also be important in an emergency. You may want to have a phone number to reach the roommates parents, phone for an on-campus job, etc.
Every Parent Should Be...
- happy that
their child is
that there will
in your view,
but try to
the best light
them. That’s the
hard part. Try
“Good news, I’m
proud of you.”
know that you
for that exam.”
- able to
part of why we
send our sons
and daughters to
college is for
them to grow.
- able to
think back to
days. What do
you remember the
- quiet! It’s
hard to let go
until they ask
for help. By
questions we can
in their lives
we don’t do
this, it’s hard
for growth to
growth is one of
- willing to
listen but slow
and try not to
map out their
- in constant
touch the first
and a few phone
- sure to send
- willing to
let go once
goes to college.
quite a freeing
feeling once you
- prepared to let them determine their own future.