Every new student grapples with making a successful transition to college ― to remain healthy, happy, grounded, and in school. Indeed, the national statistics are sobering: one in three freshman will not come back for sophomore year, and less than fifty percent will graduate on time. Adjustment is key, especially during the lazy summer months before move-in and the dizzying end of a student’s first semester. Simultaneously, parents must also prepare for the absence of a child who has been their focus for a very long time—and plan to make this change a win for the whole family. Distilling lessons and sharing stories (some cautionary, some entertaining, all helpful) from her long college advisory career, Ivy League dean, Monique Rinere, presents a unique month-by-month roadmap to a college experience that is rich, rewarding, and successful for teens and parents alike. Taking parents from the moment the acceptances have been received to the end of the first college semester, her expert advice covers:
- Assessing the “right fit:” Who and what to ask to get the real scoop.
- Understanding actual costs: considering hidden expenses, financial aid and scholarship fine print, loans, and work-study opportunities.
- Parenting through the “senior slump” so that students don’t jeopardize their hard-won college spot.
- Talking to your child about freshman culture shock and their new freedoms around parties, food, finances, and sleep.
- What your child needs to know about working with an academic advisor, interacting with professors, and creating their own community of advisors
- How to help your rising freshman create a conceptual bridge from where they are―a graduating high school senior―to where they want to be―a college alum.
- Time management and class scheduling tips to help your child pick an appropriate class (and extracurricular) load.
- For parents: facing the emptying nest, letting go of your anxieties about your child’s autonomy, and seizing this opportunity to reinvent your life in new and intentional ways!