August 2017

Dear CMC Parents:

First and foremost, welcome to you and your family. We are so happy that you and your student are now members of our community, and we hope that you will feel a strong connection to CMC. If this is your first child attending college, we imagine that you are excited for them, but also nervous about what the next few months will be like for them here at CMC. If you ever would like to speak to someone about how you are doing, or if you have any questions about anything that your student shares with you, please be in touch with us. Our phone numbers and email addresses are below and we would be happy to chat with you.

Thinking back on our own experiences as parents, we thought we would share a few things that might be helpful in the coming days.

1. Once you leave CMC and head home, you will be tempted to call, text, or email your student every few hours just to see how things are going. If they don’t respond you will probably worry. But remember that orientation – getting acquainted with the school, their advisors professors, and new friends will keep them very busy. So, it is a good idea to just set up a specific time to connect each day or every two or three days. This will help them learn to work through things on their own, and will help you to get adjusted to having them away from home.

2. If your student feels homesick, remember that it is completely natural and that many students experience this. Encourage them to talk to their RA (Resident Advisor) in their dormitory and/or to the staff in the Dean of Students Office. These individuals have gone through this themselves and they have also been trained to help students manage these feelings. If you have a big concern about your student, you can reach out to the Dean of Students Office at 909-621-8114 or deanofstudents@cmc.edu. The Deans will follow then up to support your student and let you know how to help as well.

3. Here are some other things to remember when your students calls or texts you:

Don’t let them get caught up in comparing CMC to their high school or home. Of course, everything will feel different (the food, the rooms, the bathrooms, the classes, the town). It is supposed to be different so that they can grow. Help them focus on what is going well and ask them to tell you about it. That will help remind them why they choose to go to college and to CMC in particular.

Even if it feels scary or they are shy, encourage your student to do all they can to make personal connections. Other students and professors want to meet them and get to know them. Your student should:

  • Have at least a 5-minute conversation with each of their professors during the first weeks of school. Introduce themselves, comment on what they are learning, and how things have been in the first few weeks at CMC.
  • Do the same in their dorm – walk around the halls and pop their heads into an open door. So many students will be excited to talk with someone.
  • Find out about the clubs that might be of interest, go to the first meetings – and join in.

Encourage your student to get help with their classes soon as they need it. Again, they should not be shy or afraid to ask for help. Most students are feeling the same way.

  • Professors have office hours and your student should meet them then and tell them what they are having problems with.
  • Don’t let things build up.
  • Students assigned a Faculty Advisor during orientation. Faculty Advisors can offer academic advice.

If the roommate situation is challenging, encourage your student to talk to their RA (Resident Advisor). Each dorm has an RA to support students. They can also go to the Dean of Students Office for help.

Warmly,
Maria Morales-Kent P’17
mkent@thacher.org
Karla Ahmanson P’16 P’19
karla@ahmanson.la
CMC Parent Network Volunteers