This week, as part of our Countdown to Move-In Day, we’re talking about parents in the process. For many students, Move-In Day can be one massive jumble of emotions. You’re officially “leaving the nest,” which might leave you and your family feeling: ecstatic, terrified, excited, nervous, proud, guilty, independent, and unsure…all at the same time. That’s a lot of emotion to handle in a 24-hour period!
If you’re worried about parting ways with the fam following move-in, then read our tidbits of advice. To some of you, us admission folk may seem ollllllld, but believe it or not, we were in your very same shoes not very long ago. :)
Dear Admissions Team,
What advice do you have for incoming freshmen and their families when it comes to parents’ involvement in the process. How did your own families help support you in the transition to college?
Michelle (a mom to three recent college grads!) says: “Share your feelings with each other before the day begins using ‘I feel’ statements. For example: Student: ’I feel excited’ or ‘I feel anxious.’ Mom: ‘I feel nervous’ or ‘I feel proud.’ It will help each family member understand the experience from everyone’s perspective. You will all be feeling something different on that day.”
Residence Life (in their Move-In Day Guide, pages 6-7) says: “Parents, let your student and their roommate set up and decorate their room. Let them sort out who brings specific items to share as they communicate prior to move-in.”
Lauren says: “I am very close to my family and was very nervous/excited about moving away from home. So, my parents and brother (and cat) wrote me a little note that my mom tucked in some of my things. I found it later on after they left. The notes talked about how proud they were of me (I was a first-generation college student) and how they knew that I would have lots of fun, learn so much and make great friends; basically reassuring all the worries I had. They also put a little gift card in there to my favorite restaurant so I could eat something that reminded me of home. On Move-In Day, they also bought Mom and Dad t-shirts from the bookstore, and in a care package they sent me the next week, they included a picture of them wearing their shirts! They were very thoughtful and made sure I had a little piece of home, but not too much, to help make any homesickness go away! For my friends that were commuters, their parents came to orientation and made sure to be involved. They came to games on campus or Family Weekend in order to let my friends show them their domain!”
Carrie says: “On Move-In Day, my parents made it clear that they didn’t expect me to call home every day. My Dad told me, ‘Just call every Sunday to catch up.’ For me, having a regularly scheduled ‘call-home’ time ensured that my family and I were still in the loop regarding each others’ lives, but it also allowed me to flex my independence and be in charge of my new college life.”
BU’s Office of Parent Programs says: “As very important members of the Bellarmine community, we wish to be available to you as parents and help you feel confident about your students’ experience. We provide information about activities and services for parents as well as opportunities for parents to network and socialize with one another. We also assist parents in solving problems that may arise and promote parent participation in campus activities.” On their website, your family can read Parent FAQs, sign up for the Parent E-Newsletter or blog, and learn more about Family Weekend 2012 (October 19-21).
For more tips and advice on Bellarmine’s Move-In Day, check out our Residence Life Move-In Guide. Best of luck getting ready, and see you soon!
-Carrie Daut, Admission Counselor