During their four years at UB, your student will master a wide range of skills and graduate from here competent not only in their academic disciplines but also in terms of character, leadership, and being personal responsible – all that enables them to become fully independent. This requires hard work on all fronts. We recognize that one of the most difficult parts of this transition is allowing students the freedom to succeed, as well as the freedom to learn from their mistakes.
Letting go is an important process to allow your student the opportunity to explore new terrain and develop a firmer self-identity. Parental interactions are essential to increasing the confidence your student has in the journey they are experiencing. In order to facilitate this, you may need to change your style of parenting and interact with your student in new ways. Although students still need your love and support, you will need to become less involved in order to allow them to take on more responsibility and learn self-discipline and independence.
If your student is living on-campus or moving to an off-campus apartment, learn how to get there, what to bring, and what not to bring. Learn about housing opening and closing dates and times (including vacations and breaks that students need to vacate their on-campus housing for), and encourage your student to become familiar with the academic calendar.
Discuss financial and credit issues. Have plans in place to address every day expenses, beginning of the semester expenses (i.e., books and supplies), and other financial issues that may arise throughout the course of the semester. Talk with your student about credit cards, the importance of good credit, and debt management. Stress the importance of developing a sticking to a budget, and assist your student in addressing these issues prior to them coming to college. It is also a good idea to establish a bank account in the area of the college. If your student will have a checking or credit account for the first time, teach him or her how to maintain a budget and a checkbook. Also, stress the importance of keeping financial documents safe and secure.
Help your student understand how to stay healthy. Discuss health-related issues with your student, and encourage a healthy lifestyle and responsible choices. Encourage balance in your student’s life, and discuss healthy dietary habits, getting sufficient sleep, playing too hard, seeking appropriate medical attention when ill, keeping up with their class work to avoid stress wherever possible, exercising, and other habits that form the basis of a healthy lifestyle.
Discuss how to stay safe with your student. Review tips on personal safety with your student such as locking doors, walking in groups, emergency phones, and campus resources. Encourage your student to use discretion about posting campus addresses, mobile phone numbers, class schedules, and compromising photos on social networking websites.