During the academic year, the Academic Support Center staff has the privilege of meeting parents of prospective students during on-campus events. From campus tours to department showcases, these events are attended by parents and students to learn more about the university. Many departments, including our own, set up tables in the hope to speak with students and parents. More often than not, we only encounter parents.
Parents, without students. Poor lonely parents, left to wander the wild campus landscape.
Our department often interacts with parents and students, but our answers are more for students than for parents. We know that parents come up with the important questions, especially before classes begin. It’s important to have your student with you when you start to ask the questions, so that students can hear the answers as well as ask any questions of their own.
When you and your student come to our campus, come prepared. Consider these three questions with your student so that you can both be ready to take advantage of your campus visit:
- What makes you excited about visiting the campus? Academic programs, athletic programs, extracurricular activities? Use that excitement to plan your visit and decide what groups/tables to visit.
- Do you have specific concerns? Many students worry about academic assistance, finding campus activities, or locating on-campus employment. Those concerns can help you decide where to set appointments when you arrive on campus.
- Do you have time to speak with current students? If you’re not pressed for time and your student is willing, consider speaking with one of the tour guides after your campus tour. There are lots of topics that aren’t covered in your walk around the campus, and your student can get a better feel for the university environment through casual conversation. Take the time to engage your tour guide and learn more about the general campus environment.
Above all, make sure that your student is asking the questions and receiving answers. Your student will be the one to ultimately arrive on campus, attend classes, complete assignments, and earn the grade; therefore, encourage your student to be involved in the questions and tour process. Don’t let them leave you to wander the wild campus alone.