Resources & Advice

Parents & Families

Advice for Parents with Students Living on Campus

Here are four “rules” we have found to help both you and your child adjust to the transition.

Rule #1: Kindly avoid the word “homesick”

Homesickness is a very powerful emotion and the power of suggestion can have disastrous results. During the first few weeks or months of school, the challenge of living with new people, adjusting to fresh situations, and handling independence dominates a student's emotions and energy. Your son/daughter will miss you, but reminding him/her of the loneliness and frustration of homesickness will only heighten any negative emotions that he/she may already be experiencing.

Rule #2: Send lots of mail (even if your student doesn't write back)

Although new students are typically eager to experience their new autonomy, most remain anxious for continued family ties and the security that those relationships bring. A student's sudden surge of independence may be misinterpreted by a sensitive, well-meaning parent as rejection. News from home, even seemingly mundane information, such as a weather update or news about the high school sports teams, will be very important to your son/daughter. An entire week of facing an empty mailbox is extremely disappointing to a student. However, as a word of warning, do not ask for or expect to receive a reply to every letter you send.

Rule #3: Participate in campus events

Although you are a local parent, and may even drive by CUI every day, make sure you participate in the family functions, such as Family Orientation, which is held during fall and summer, and Family Weekend. Also, come to campus from time-to-time and take advantage of the array of athletic events, concerts, and art exhibitions. Remember that, as a parent of a CUI student, you too are now part of our community.

Rule #4: Help them pack

As you help them pack - bonus! you can clean your house at the same time! See our packing list of items students should bring to campus, and some they should not.

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