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Four Year Parent Guide - First Year

Parents of First Year Students - The first year of college is a time of transition in many areas, making new friends, freedom of choice, facing the increased rigor of university academics, and expanding understanding of majors and careers. This is typically a time of assessing abilities, interests, and personality while evaluating majors. Students make these judgments based on their success (or failure) and interest in their courses, involvement in activities, and discussions with family and friends.

Ways you can help:
  1. Affirm your student's abilities, skills, interests, and personality traits. You've spent a lot of time with your son or daughter and probably have some valuable insights! He/she may have forgotten his/her positive traits in the flood of college life. Listen to your student's thoughts and comments and be open to change.

  2. Refer your student to the CCO for career counseling if he/she is confused about his/her major. The CCO offers a variety of interest, personality and values inventories. A career consultant can provide many strategies for exploration and evaluation of careers and majors which may fit. The CCO is located in Young Hall 132. Students may call 765-494-3981 to make an appointment.

  3. Encourage your student to:
    1. Develop strong study skills - poor academic performance can limit academic options.
    2. Get involved in campus life. It provides an opportunity to development leadership skills that employers are seeking! It also often makes the difference in feeling that Purdue is a good choice.
    3. Balance social life and academics. The above suggestions may seem conflicting at first glance. BALANCE is the key to creating a successful first year.

  4. Allow your student to try new ideas. Don't panic if History, English, or Psychology are mentioned. If the option isn't a good fit, it will probably pass, but if it does match the student's interests and abilities, she/he may have discovered a great career path. Encourage your student to explore majors and careers thoroughly, including tasks, job market, salary, etc.

  5. Listen non-judgmentally to your student's thoughts and feelings about classes, activities, friends, etc. You may pick up valuable information to help in the decision-making process!