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Parent Email–May 11, 2012

  • Parents of Students Home for the Summer
  • For Parents of Seniors
  • Off-campus Housing Fair
  • Spring Semester Grades
  • Miscellaneous

Campus is beautiful this time of year, and if you watch closely on the Northrop Mall webcam, you may see a few graduates in caps and gowns. For those thinking beyond the Twin Cities, though, here is a link to this year's International Photo Contest 2012, sponsored by the Learning Abroad Center.

Parents of Students Home for the Summer

If your student is back home after living on campus this year, he or she may be slowly adjusting to the homecoming. While students are relieved to have finals over and are looking forward to some unstructured time, they also may be struggling to figure out friendships. The high school friends they were so dedicated to a year ago might seem like strangers now. They miss their college friends and the independence of campus life. One first-year student announced to her family that "There's nothing for me at home anymore. My life is at college."

You might find your student criticizing segments of family life that never were an issue before—like the contents of the refrigerator ("Can't you buy organic foods?"), the kind of car you drive ("Hybrid cars make so much more sense!"), or the TV programs the family watches ("Really? Reality shows?"). Students will eventually settle in, and patience among all family members will help. It's important to set boundaries and define responsibilities, while giving students at least a few days to savor being back in their own bedrooms with no homework hanging over their heads.

For Parents of Seniors

First, and most important, congratulations to those who are graduating...and to their families. We're all happy for you!

Some of our graduates have not yet found jobs, and an upcoming, day long seminar is being offered by career services professionals to help with the job search in a recovering economy: 9 a.m. to 3:30 p.m., Wednesday, May 23, 3rd Floor Science Teaching and Student Services Building (STSS). In the seminar, "You've Graduated, What Now?," students will receive information on conducting a creative job search, crafting an outstanding resume, and interviewing effectively. Students will gain LinkedIn knowledge and tips, and they will practice networking with actual employers. This event is offered to U of M, Twin Cities, seniors and recent grads with graduation dates between December 2011 and August 2012. The cost is $10 and includes lunch. Registration is required—students can sign up via GoldPASS—click on "Career Events" and search for "What Now". Carlson students please register via The Edge. Questions can be directed to the student's college career center or Emily Loudon, at 612-626-4482.

Off-Campus Housing Fair

Students who plan to live in off-campus housing next fall may still need to make housing arrangements. With so many options and so much pressure to make a quick decision, the process could be a little overwhelming and confusing for students. To help make the choices more clear, Housing & Residential Life will be hosting a repeat of their Off-Campus Housing Fair, open to all students, especially transfer students. Participants will have a chance to meet landlords in person, learn about different types of leases, and schedule apartment tours while gaining valuable information about off-campus options in a friendly, helpful environment.

The housing fair is scheduled from 2 to 4 p.m., May 23, in the Mississippi Room, 3rd floor of Coffman Memorial Union. Please remind your student to attend and to keep in mind that Housing & Residential Life schedules an Off-Campus Housing Fair every year in late winter/early spring. Housing also sponsors an Off-Campus Listing Service to provide information on housing options.

Spring Semester Grades

Final grades should be submitted by instructors no later than three business days following the date of the scheduled final examination (regardless of whether there is actually a final given). If students have questions about a missing grade, they should contact their instructors. Review the University's grading policy for more information.

Students who believe their grade is incorrect or who think they have been treated unfairly should first discuss the situation with the instructor. If they can't resolve the situation, they can work with the Student Conflict Resolution Center. That office offers formal and informal resolution assistance between students and the University.


Sometimes students don't want to talk with their family about new medications or treatments that they began during the school year, but it is possible they may have had a recent medical appointment or need follow up. If your student is home for the summer, you can simply let your son or daughter know how to access any needed health care through your home clinic.

Please respond to the Question of the Month for May. In April, we asked parents if they expect their student to attend a graduate or professional program after completing and undergraduate degree. Approximately three-fourths said yes, with the majority of parents expecting their student to continue their studies within a year or two of receiving a bachelor's degree.