As a parent of a college student, you may feel overwhelmed and unsure of where to turn for support and resources as you navigate your child’s college years. One of the most important resources is the college itself. Many colleges have resources where you can find information about everything from financial aid to academic support services. Your child’s college may also offer workshops or seminars for parents on topics like college admissions, financial planning, and student health and wellness. The information they offer is great, but it is critical to remember that they are only sharing what they want you to know. What about the rest? What do you want to know?
Whether your questions are about college student mental health, campus safety, or what to do in the case of a real emergency, there are resources available to help you navigate this exciting and challenging time in your child’s life.
One valuable resource for parents of college students is online support communities. There are numerous online forums and social media groups specifically for parents of college students, where you can connect with other parents and share advice and experiences. Search for them! These groups can be a great source of support and information, and they can help you feel less alone in your journey. Often, colleges have some of these communities set up for parents as well.
There are also organizations that offer support and resources for parents of college students. Again, be sure to check the colleges your child is looking at or attending. For example, the Parent & Family Programs at the University of California, Davis also offers a range of resources and support services for parents of college students.
If you have safety-specific concerns you can learn about specific colleges’ statistics and you can learn about the myths and truths about campus life, by checking out my on-demand webinar called College Uncovered. I draw on research, my experience working with colleges and students for over thirty years, and my mom experience to shine a light behind-the-scenes of college life. You’ll learn about common problems your child is likely to face and you’ll receive a customizable ‘cheat sheet’ to develop the resources you need so you can be ready to help when your child needs you. You’ll also receive a resource booklet jam-packed with great websites, reading material, and practical resources!
There are a number of resources available to help parents of college students. It can be hard to sort through it all! Find people, college departments, online communities, and websites that you trust, and rely on those!