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For Parents

Can you believe your child will soon be off to college?

That's the first hurdle in being a good college parent—acceptance of the transition to adulthood the child is making.

Probably your inclination is to either make the crucial college decisions for your child or try to facilitate good decision-making on the child's part. It's best to stick with the latter and try very hard to let the child have the driver's seat. It's his/her life. It's time for him/her to make the decisions.

BUT, at the same time you're letting the child have the steering wheel, keep in mind that the research shows that parents are KEY in kids wanting to go to college and taking the steps to make it happen.

Encouraging and supporting college aspirations from early on in a child's life are crucial. Parents can encourage their child's interest in college by frequently discussing their own expectations, hopes and dreams for their children well before the child's junior and senior years in high school. By doing this in a casual way, a climate that contains an expectation of college is created.

Also be a good listener. Your child needs somewhere to express his/her hopes and dreams for the future.

You can show support by:

There are specific tips for parents that can help you help your child through this important time of research, decision-making and action.