College is an important time of transition for students, but also for their family members and loved ones. Each student experiences the transition to college in a unique way. Your student will likely experience a range of emotions as they traverse through this exciting and challenging period of their lives. During this time, your student will face personal, interpersonal challenges and academic pressures, which will deepen their identity development, and they will continue to need your support all along the way.
A student’s transition to college can also be an exciting and difficult adjustment for parents and guardians. It can be especially challenging to balance providing support for your student, while also encouraging their independence. College students will continue to turn to their parents/guardians for guidance, and you have a great impact on your student’s wellness, decision-making, and behavior. Parents/guardians have the opportunity to strengthen their student’s resiliency and positive coping through support, encouragement, and trust. That being said, it will be important to accept that you won’t know every detail of your student’s life. Although your student may never have lived away from you before, it is important to recognize that going to college is an important step in your student’s maturation. The values and ethics you instilled will help your student make good choices and decisions. We recommend that you maintain open lines of communication with your student so that they know they can turn to you as they are faced with new experiences and challenges.