WHAT’S NEW? SUNY New Paltz Parent Newsletter
MOVING-IN DAY – What it looked like…
Thursday, August 25 turned out to be a beautiful day to welcome your students to New Paltz! Many staff members and students were on hand to move-in new students and welcome family members to campus.
Click here for a Moving-In Day article & to view photos
MOVING-IN DAY – What it felt like…..
The cartoon below may make you laugh, but to some extent the experiences depicted in the scenarios are usually true for the majority of parents. Since you dropped your student off for Orientation Part II, Welcome Week, and the first week of classes, they officially crossed the threshold to becoming college students. We hope you were able to get through your own “first week of college” as well. It’s an adjustment for everyone involved, so remember to give yourself permission to ride the waves of feelings that come with an “emptier nest.” Those feelings are real and you are not alone in feeling them, so commiserate with other people you know who have children in college – it may help you feel better about what you are going through.
PARENT & FAMILY WEEKEND – September 24-25: RSVP ONLINE TODAY!
We are excited to invite you to a great weekend of events to choose from, and you can enjoy a visit even if you only come up for the day on Saturday!
Our headline entertainment is A Night of Comedy featuring Comic-Hypnotist Frank Santos Jr. and our own student vocal group Absolut A Cappella is the opening act. We have also chartered the Rip Van Winkle just for New Paltz families to enjoy a two–hour boat cruise on the Hudson.
Tickets are selling quickly, so go online and make your reservation today!
The entire invitation and registration form is online at: www.newpaltz.edu/parentsweekend
Please complete a registration form (online or via return mail) even if you do not plan to attend any of the paid events so that we can plan accordingly for the number of visitors coming to campus. We encourage you to make reservations early as seating is limited at certain events. Online reservations are easy to complete and you can pay for paid events with your credit card.
If you choose to mail in your reservation, you can pay by credit card or a check made out to “CAS 8230” and mailed to:
Center for Student Development
SUNY New Paltz
Student Union 301
1 Hawk Drive
New Paltz, NY 12561
Not coming to a paid event? Sign-up anyway and stop by our registration table on the 2nd Floor of the Student Union from 8:30am-2:00pm to enter to win a great gift basket of New Paltz gear!
2016-2017 PARENT HANDBOOK & CALENDAR
The Parent Handbook & Calendar includes information such as important academic dates and deadlines, Midterm and Final Examination schedules, sporting events, and notes on days when classes are not being held due to holiday breaks. You can view the online version of the handbook/calendar on the www.newpaltz.edu/parents page.
A LOOK BACK AT SUMMER ORIENTATION 2016
Student Group Photos & Snapshots
Your students met new friends, gained a Peer Mentor, and created many memories while they attended Orientation this summer. Click here to enjoy the group photos of Sessions 1-5 as well as some captured candid moments. You may even find yourself in a photo!
Click here to view Orientation 2016 photos
GETTING HOME FOR FALL BREAK AND THANKSGIVING
Although the residence halls stay open for these holiday weekends, if your student chooses to go home for the four-day “Fall Break” weekend from October 8-11, and/or Thanksgiving Weekend (November 23 – November 27) they can travel by bus right from New Paltz.
- Adirondack Trailways Bus tickets are sold in the Office of Student Activities and Union Services in Student Union 211. For details go to:
- Classic College Express runs express charter buses from campus to three stops: Roosevelt Field, the Exit 49 Park & Ride on the LIE, and Smithaven Mall. You can reserve tickets from New Paltz and back to New Paltz online at: http://www.classictrans.com/CollegeEx/co_npal1.html
- For other options, you can also visit our “Getting Your Student Home” site at: http://www.newpaltz.edu/current/gettinghome.html
ARTICLE OF THE MONTH
“Untying the Apron String: Tips for Letting Go”
Dr. Gweneth M. Lloyd, Director, Psychological Counseling Center
Chances are as you prepare to engage in the actual and final process of sending your child off to college, you will encounter a crescendo in your relationship like no other. It may be one that can be comforting as a few piano notes, loud as the bangs on a drum or as unpredictable rhythms of a musical composition. The struggle between parent and child to “let-go” of each other is a process that begins during labor and delivery and extends through the lifetime of the relationship and sometimes even well beyond that.
In our society it is socially sanctioned that somewhere between ages 18-21, the child-to-adult rites of passage begins. Colleges and universities have come to represent one of the experimental grounds for exploring and experiencing the tasks, activities, rights and responsibilities of becoming an adult. Parents have the breath-holding challenge of standing back and observing their child apply, test, evaluate and select the morals, values and standards that they have been ‘spoon-fed’ over the last seventeen to eighteen years. The physical departure of your child to college will come to represent one of the pivotal points in your relationship status with your child and likewise for your child too. Colleges and universities perceive and manage any enrolled student as an “adult” with all the rights, privileges, responsibilities, benefits and liabilities that such a status holds.
Strategies for working through “letting-go” process: Loosening the apron string
To maximize the growth of your now young “Adult-Child” it is necessary for you to manage your responses and interactions in a manner consistent with their newly acquired adult status. You start doing so by gradually changing your perception of them as a “child,” even when they behave as one. You will need to remind them that they are now young adults and that their decisions and actions carry consequences that may have positive or negative outcomes.
- It is not unusual for them to call you and demand that you come and pick them up to return home. Transitioning to college can be very anxiety provoking. Talk to them about feelings, fears, and concerns. This is a time to refine your listening skills. Talk less and listen more. Listen with your ears and not your heart. Be mindful of knowing when to “hold” your opinion, “fold” your opinion or “walk-away” with your opinion. Partialize the problem by breaking it down and focus on one or two things at a time. Before ending the conversation, have an understanding of what action they will take by the time you talk again. Don’t take control of the situation unless it is life threatening or they have demonstrated that they have done everything possible to manage or solve the problem. It will be necessary for you to remember that in this new status role change, in some situations there will be nothing more you can do. As painful as it may be, you may even discover that the best you can do, is to do nothing. Remember, crisis provides an opportunity for change and change produces and enhances growth.
- Gradual change in your perception will lead to your young “Adult-Child” assuming greater ownership for their life. This will mean in your role as parent, you are transitioning from commander and chief to “consultant”. You will need to squelch the urge to direct or control. Instead, be a good listener and redirect the decision back to them. Build their self-confidence by empathizing and reminding them of a similar time or situation which they managed by exercising good judgment and problem-solving skills. When they make a decision with an undesirable outcome, again, squelch the urge to say, “I told you so.” Instead, focus your response on talking about what they think can be done differently without commanding or controlling the process.
- One of the roles of a consultant is to offer options. Try not to be the problem-solver but instead a resource director/facilitator. There is not one problem related to the student’s overall academic, social, psychological and physical success that a corresponding campus resource is not available to assist. For almost every conceivable problem a student may encounter, there is an established campus based resource office professionally staffed to assist the student. Therefore, in your role as a consultant-parent redirect them to the appropriate office for assistance. Keep the resource folder you received during orientation next to your bedside and/or in your work bag. Use it as your reference/resource guide. As you already know, the college website can also be very resourceful.
- Establish clear and mutual expectations with your young “Adult-Child” about finance management, reasonable academic performance including communication of final grades, your visitation to campus and their visitation home centered on frequency of visits. Address these issues early on as they tend to be the general problem areas. It is not unusual that they may want to come home almost every weekend, especially if they are experiencing home-sickness or is involved in a dating relationship with someone at home. Certainly this behavior has the potential for limiting the kind of campus-based experience that they could have. The downtimes of weekends are opportunities for making connections with room-mates, suite-mates and others across campus. If this is a potential problem, talk about it and have a mutual understanding about the frequency of home visit trips. You may consider limiting trips home to one weekend per month. As their campus residence is now home turf, resist the urge to do surprise visits. You may be more surprised than you want to be. Therefore tell them that you are considering visiting and give a time/day range. When you visit, resist the commander and chief role of firing one question after the other or commenting on what they look like. Be constructive in your communication especially about room condition, roommates and friends you will meet. Remember, your non-constructive comments can have lasting consequences.
- Remember, a good consultant is always open, seeking consultation for themselves in order to effectively support and assist. As your “Adult-Child’s” personal consultant, the Psychological Counseling Center welcomes your call/ inquiry for assistance, especially in the psychological/emotional health and safety of your young “adult-child.”
- Remember, your student lives in a supportive community of peers and countless professionals. Your student is “able” and “capable.”
UPCOMING EVENTS FOR YOUR STUDENT!
As described at Orientation, on an ongoing basis, there are a number of activities for your first-year student to do outside of class. First-Year Fridays are social events for first-year students where some of the Orientation Leader/Peer Mentors will be present. To view Part 1 of the Fall 2016 “First-Year Fridays” schedule click the link below:
The “Saturday Movie Night Series” events for the semester can be viewed at the link below:
The Office of Student Activities and Union Services also sponsors large scale events promoted campus-wide every month. In addition to these events, their office also hosts annual programs every year. To view these programs, click on the link below: