How Can Your Help Prepare Your Newly Accepted College Student for University Life?
The first thing to do is educate yourself on the college they chose. Find out about classes, social events, and dorm room life. Interact with other parents on social media platforms and college forums. It’s a good idea to keep abreast of the goings-on at the university so you can better help your college kid navigate freshman life.
Your parenting has prepared your child for college and every challenging moment before and after. You’ve instilled confidence in them, which will be their driving force to get them through tough times. You’ve instilled a love of learning and growth, and your kiddo knows they can come to you for support, encouragement, and advice. That’s the trademark of a great parent, so you are already halfway there in helping your college student-to-be prep for Life at university.
What Will Your College Kid Do for Financial Stability While at University?
Most college kids leave home for the first time, making a hard choice to be financially independent and responsible. For a small percentage, needs are met by allowances from parents and guardians, but many college students have to rely on part-time or full-time work for extra bills, food, and other essentials.
Have you discussed finances with your newly accepted college kid? Your student must know what they want to do to support themselves while at university. Here are some tips to help your college student-to-be save money and become financially responsible.
Come up with a realistic budget. Factor in expenses, like credit cards, food, and weekly toiletries, then add $100 for emergencies.
Don’t spend above the budget. While it’s exciting to go out with college friends for breakfast, lunch, and dinner, it cuts into a budget. Teach your college kid to eat at home or on campus. Please encourage them to look at restaurants and fast food as sparing indulgences.
Use credit cards as a last resort. Many college students wind up with credit card debt and student loan debt when they leave university. Credit cards hold a lot of power, which can be a problem, especially when a newly financially independent person sees cards as a form of instant gratification.
Teach your college kid the importance of paying bills on time. Don’t let them ruin their credit score and future for the next 7 years by defaulting on unnecessary debts.
Side tip: If attending college has always been the plan for your kiddo, you should’ve socked away some financial help for them when the time came. If not, use this time to give them an allowance every month for the base of college expenses. They will still have the bulk of financial independence, but a little help from mom and dad wouldn’t hurt.
Set Expectations, but Ultimately, Let Your Child Know that Success is Their Decision
When your kiddo reaches 18 years old, they are considered adults, which means independence and adult responsibilities. When they throw college into that mix, there are even more responsibilities and expectations. While you have hopes and dreams for your young adult, the bulk of their college ambition will come from within. Their success is their decision.
How do you react to college for your kid? Be clear in your expectations, hopes, and dreams. Explain to your college kid how you hope that they will use this opportunity to their advantage to further their future. But remember that burnout is a real problem, so strive to be understanding if your student-to-be decides they need a break after a semester or two.
Get Involved in Social Events for Families, but Otherwise, Let Your Child Experience Independence
College is a good time for your young adult to experience being independent. If they live on campus, they are responsible for the balance and organization of their Life. Don’t back off entirely, though. Keep updated on family events at the university, but otherwise, allow your child to navigate the college experience independently. If they need you, be there, but let them feel their independence.
Encourage Social Culture and Greek Life Participation for Support, Friendship, and Connection
Greek Life is one area of any university that would look amazing on a post-graduate resume. Fraternities and sororities are considered the epitome of the college experience. They raise awareness of worthy causes through social activities, and your college kid will have support through friendship and academic encouragement. Greek Life also enables current students to build career connections through social events where they will meet alumni and prospective employers.
Talk to Your College Kid About Degrees, Future Goals, and Possible Majors – Be Their Soundboard
Encourage your college kid to be aware of their future. Be their soundboard. Listen to their plans for degrees and future goals. Use your life experience and expertise from the career world and job market to help steer your student-to-be towards success.
If your college student feels floundering and facing burnout, refresh their ambitions with university merch and Greek Life gifts. Restore their purpose by giving them presents that reignite their focus on their future.
The transition from home to university is as challenging as an everyday kid to a college freshman. There will be learning curves and challenges, but perseverance and encouragement will help your child thrive in college.
Of-times, children struggle in college because they lack the confidence and assuredness from home. That said, you can help your kiddo succeed academically by supporting their college choices. You don’t necessarily have to agree with everything your child wants to study, but support and acceptance will bolster your college kid’s confidence.