Residence Life and
West Chester University
202 Lawrence Center
West Chester, PA 19383
The Office of Residence Life and Housing Services recognizes the major life adjustment it is to send your student away to college. For many, this transition represents the first time away from home for an extended period of time for your student. For some, it represents the first time that your student will be sharing a space with someone else. For others, it represents an opportunity for your student to become responsible for themselves by learning to ask questions and seek out answers to their questions or concerns. All of this transition is bound to fill a parent with concern for their student.
Welcome to "Especially for Parents"...the Campus Arrival Website section just for you! In it we provide you with some guidelines to make the upcoming transition as smooth as possible for your student and for yourselves!
Parental involvement can be a major key in the success of a student. Despite the fact that many students are legally of age, the majority of students benefit from their parents support, involvement, and direction. This important component must be balanced with the parent letting go of performing responsibilities the student can do for themselves. For example, students can and should meet with their advisor to make academic scheduling plans. It is best that the student learn to negotiate institutional systems on their own to get their desires and needs met to attain their goals.
Most difficulties students encounter fall within the normal range of experience and they can maneuver through the trial to success on their own. When students do this they can feel a sense of accomplishment and pride. Please note that success is not that the student gets what they want every time. This is not realistic in society as a whole. In fact learning how to make hard decisions is a basic matter of life. For example, I do not get along with my roommate and I feel miserable. If I move I will miss my friends on the floor. The student needs to decide to stay with the friends and deal with the roommate or move from the room and solve the roommate issue but not live close to his/her friends. Their ideal situation might be that their roommate leaves campus all together. However this is highly unlikely and the student is left to make the best decision for him or herself.
Parents should listen to their student and determine if the trial falls within the normal range of experiences that most college students undergo. If it does and their student is equipped to handle the matter, they should listen first, generate ideas and outcomes with their student, suggest that they use campus resources, and finally let their student make the final decision.
When the trial falls out of the range of normal experience or the parent feels that their student cannot handle the trial or is not handling the trial in a productive way over a certain amount of time, then the parent is advised to use campus resources for his or her student. Please keep in mind that the ideal is that your son or daughter learn to manage their own lives. Some examples to determine parental involvement are when the student is being sexually harassed, physically abused, or experiencing racism, etc. The West Chester University Community along with you and your student can work to generate positive outcomes.
Finally, the University desires that your student has a positive experience and successfully complete their goals here at West Chester University. We have put in place resources to aid them in their pursuits. Any employee of West Chester University will be happy to assist you to help your student. If you are ever in doubt of what options are available or where your student can get information, please do not hesitate to call our office.
Since most of the students we are responsible for on campus are at least 18 years of age, the University is restricted as to what information we can legally share with others. In the case of standard illness, we would expect that students would inform their parents or guardians of the situation and would take advantage of the services available on campus in the Student Health Center. For acute issues, notification may be made through the Emergency Room at the local hospital or through the University Department of Public Safety.