Coping with College
It’s normal for students and parents to be concerned about different aspects of college: students with fitting in (making friends), having fun (whatever that means to your student) and being appreciated for who they are. Parents worry about success (grades) and preparing for a bright future (getting a well-paying job/career).
It may take a few eventful years for all these goals to come together—but they will! In the first semester of college, a parent’s top priority is calm connection.
Here are a few tips:
- The first four weeks are typically the worst for homesickness. It’s OK for students to come home when they feel sick! To help reduce homesickness, encourage your student to explore the campus and community to discover pursuits besides academics they might enjoy. If your student needs support, call the Counseling Center to learn options.
- Remember that your student does not care how much you know until you show how much you care—but you don’t have to have all the answers about college. Encourage your student to ask for help; the campus is full of sympathetic staff as well as faculty members.
- Being surrounded 24/7 by peers is both wonderful and terrifying. Both introverts and extroverts need encouragement at times to find their balance with competing needs and priorities. Ask about all aspects of their lives, not just school work.
- Learning from mistakes is a reality of life. Make an agreement with your student that you will value resiliency and self-discovery in every lesson learned; there will be a lot less anxiety about love, life, and learning with your support.
If you are concerned about how your student is doing and would like us to reach out and invite them in to talk, please call us at the Counseling Center: (914)251-6390 or visit our website.