WHAT’S NEW? SUNY New Paltz Parents Newsletter
WILL YOUR STUDENT BE LIVING ON CAMPUS NEXT FALL?
If your student lives on campus and plans to live on campus in the Fall, it’s time to submit the Advance Room Deposit (ARD) of $100. The latest they can place an ARD is April 4th. Your student should check their New Paltz e-mail account to find all the instructions for choosing their room. Payment can be made via their my.newpaltz.edu page by clicking on the “Residence Life” link and selecting the Pay Advance Room Deposit option.
NEW PALTZ IN THE NEWS
MEN’S VOLLEYBALL HITS NUMBER ONE IN NCAA D3
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AWARDS FOR METAL FACULTY REINFORCE PROGRAM’S REPUTATION AS NATIONAL LEADER
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ART PROFESSOR INSTALLS MULTIMEDIA EXHIBITION AT WASHINGTON, D.C. MUSEUM
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CAMPUS CONSTRUCTION UPDATE, SPRING 2016
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ARTICLE OF THE MONTH
Post-Midterm Support: What Can Parents Do?
By Dante Cantú, Direct of the Center for Student Resources & Academic Support
As we enter the final stretch of the spring semester, many parents may be wondering what they can do to ensure that their son or daughter completes their first year of college in strong fashion. In support of this common goal, I would like to offer parents the following suggestions.
Encourage them to gain a clear understanding of their current academic standing. There is no time like the present for a student to gain a clear understanding of their performance to date in each of their courses. This may include a letter grade (or equivalent) and a sense for the weight, or percentage, that is yet to be earned in each course.
For example, a student may find that they currently hold a “B” in a given course based on 55% of the coursework. This would serve to clarify for the student that a significant amount of opportunity exists with, say, 45% of the course grade still to be determined through the remaining course assignments or final projects. An effective, and usually more experienced student, could then use this information to guide their approach toward studying and priority management during this critical time in the semester. Students can obtain this information in a variety of ways, including from reviewing their course syllabi and through direct communication with their professors.
Identify what what’s working (and what’s not). First-year students have the tendency to hold onto unproductive study habits for far too long. I like to provide students with an adaptation of the 50/30/20 budgeting guideline to illustrate this point and to identify areas for improvement.
I would begin by asking a student to group relatively routine activities, such as eating, sleeping, and going to class, within a single category. We’ll call this the fixed category, represented numerically by 50, since it serves as the basis of a student’s everyday existence. And yes, it’s understood that for the average first-year student there’s usually room for improvement within this category. But my preference, at this point in the semester, is to ask students to turn their primary focus of scrutiny upon the next category, represented numerically or proportionally by 30.
This category represents the variety of activities that revolve around their more routine ones, including their social, academic, and other personal commitments. I believe students will find ample opportunity within this category for improved priority management (or, as some might say, behavior management). Quite simply, some activities in this category — whether it’s an approach to studying, or a particularly favored location/time of day to study — have neither fostered nor helped to produce the most solid academic outcomes, and they probably never will. Now’s the time, I tell them, to make these fairly small but significant adjustments. The sooner, the better.
The latter category (20) represents the activities, strategies or resources that the student has yet to try, include or incorporate into their approach. These might be used by, and working for, other students with differing levels of mastery and results. In addition, this category also serves to represent an openness or willingness to change (for the better). It is this type of growth mindset approach, which research increasingly shows can be cultivated, that can support a student’s academic achievement, success, and foster a spirit of continuous improvement that will serve them well beyond college.
Encourage the development of an end-of-semester plan. The process briefly sketched above could serve to support a first-year student in developing an end-of-semester plan that is tailored to their own strengths, disposition, and individual goals. For most students, a strong end-of-semester plan also includes curricular support, in the form of supplemental instruction, tutoring, and/or writing assistance.
To that end, and as part of their end-of-semester plan, please encourage your son or daughter to avail themselves of the curricular support services offered through the Center for Student Resources & Academic Support, in Old Main, room B106, 845-257-3580. The Center offers subject-based tutoring and writing support, as well as a learning strategist to support diverse learners with diagnosed learning disabilities.
The Center’s trained tutoring staff consists of peer tutors, fellow students who have learned to successfully navigate the academic terrain here at the college. Each of them, in their own way, is uniquely positioned to assist first-year students in developing an effective end-of-semester strategy. Moreover, regularly scheduled appointments also provide the necessary peer-based structure to ensure the best possible academic outcomes.
The golden high-five. As a concluding suggestion, I would encourage you to convey your parental pride to your son or daughter as they complete their first year at SUNY New Paltz. The first year of college serves as a rite-of-passage for many, and let’s recall that the traditional college years (ages 18-25) are also a time of profound developmental growth, marked by a complex process of identity- and other skills development processes, as students learn to manage and navigate a host of intellectual, personal, and social demands.
Once again, research in the field continues to demonstrate the vital relationship between parental support and their student’s personal and academic success. Your positive reinforcement could go a long way in supporting their development and success – more than you might currently imagine.
(Parents interested in a list of additional relevant resources can look here and here.)
Dante Cantú is the director of the Center for Student Resources & Academic Support at SUNY New Paltz. Mr. Cantú was recently recognized as an “Outstanding First-Year Advocate” by the National Resource Center for The First-Year Experience and Students in Transition.
DISTINGUISHED SPEAKER SERIES FEATURING ROBERT KYNCL ’95
Thursday, April 28 @ 7:30pm in Lecture Center 100
SPRING 2016 NETWORKING FAIR FOR INTERNSHIPS & JOBS
Tuesday, April 5
Noon-4pm, Student Union MPR
“SHARING MY STONES” The Impact of Drinking and Driving
Tuesday, April 5
7pm, Lecture Center 102
CO-CURRICULAR TRANSCRIPT WORKSHOP: http://www.newpaltz.edu/cct/
Wednesday, April 6
12:30pm, Humanities 116
2016 SUNY NEW PALTZ WOMEN’S LEADERSHIP SUMMIT: http://www.newpaltz.edu/summit/
SATURDAY MOVIE NIGHT SERIES: http://www.newpaltz.edu/studentdevelopment/snl.html
Saturday, April 16
“Star Wars: The Force Awakens”
8:00pm, Lecture Center 102