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Resources for Parents. Department of Residential Life. In this session. Overview of student experiences Relationship vs. Information Parent and family concerns Issues that we anticipate How to help A few thoughts Who to contact in Residential Life What to expect.

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Resources for Parents

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Resources for parents

Resources for Parents

Department of Residential Life

In this session

In this session . . .

  • Overview of student experiences

    • Relationship vs. Information

  • Parent and family concerns

    • Issues that we anticipate

  • How to help

    • A few thoughts

  • Who to contact in Residential Life

    • What to expect

Overview of student experiences

Overview of Student Experiences

Move in day

Move-In Day

  • Loading the car at home (and who comes along)

  • Driving to Mankato

  • Waiting during check-in process

  • Moving belongings into room

Move in day1

Move-In Day

  • This day presents unique stresses

  • You may experience tension as you try to help your student and they try to show independence. You are not alone!

  • Don’t wait until this day to talk with your student about this transition



  • Pull up to residence community

  • Driver stays with vehicle

  • Student goes inside to show ID and get room key

  • The Move Crew team helps unload vehicles (more assistance in Gage) until 3:00 PM

  • Driver moves vehicle to another location

Getting settled

Getting Settled

  • Follow signs for refrigerator and loft pick-up

  • We provide shopping carts and flatbeds

  • Bring a dolly/hand truck if you have one

  • In Gage, plan to wait for elevators

  • You’ll spend several hours getting settled

Take note of

Take note of

  • The Area Director’s office is off the main lobby of each residence community

    • This master’s-level professional is in charge of the facility.

  • Location where activities and events are promoted

  • At the end of the day

    At the end of the day

    • New student & family BBQ

    • Goodbyes

    • The challenge of independence and connection has been going on all day

    The first week

    The first week

    Welcome Week

    Getting to know

    roommate and floormates

    Computer Support

    via the ResNet


    First day of class

    Your student s ca

    Your student’s CA

    • CA is an undergraduate student – a sophomore, junior or senior

    • Each CA oversees a floor of 40-50 students (works approx. 20 hours per week)

    • Receives 10 days of training before the halls open

    • Not a trained psychologist, but a well-meaning student with some basic skills in helping new students succeed

    Your student s ca1

    Your student’s CA

    • Holds floor meetings to help students understand everything from the laundry room to policies

    • Talks with every resident on the floor to begin to get to know them; is available for questions, organizes attendance at Welcome Week activities, organizes floor meals together

    • Goes on safety and security rounds in the building

    Your student s ca2

    Your student’s CA

    • Documents policy violations when they become aware of them

    • Organizes events and activities all year that give your student opportunities to interact with others on the floor and in the hall if they choose to participate

    • Helps connect your student to University resources when requested

    Our partnership

    Our Partnership

    • Your evolving role as parent is very important

    • There is not a staff role that approximates a parent role

    • Parents and Res Life staff mutually support students as they enter and move through the first year of college

    Questions and opportunities

    Questions and Opportunities

    • Who am I?

    • How do I function separately from my family?

    • What relationships do I want to form?

      To support students in the search for identity, independence and intimacy, we intentionally provide many social opportunities

      • CA conversations

      • Weekly floor events

      • Weekly complex events (WOW)

      • Elections for floor leaders

    Parent and family concerns

    Parent and Family Concerns

    Two areas of concern

    Two areas of concern

    • Concerns about your student

    • Concerns about how others are impacting your student

    Concerns about your student

    Concerns about your student

    • My son says he hasn’t met anyone.

    • My daughter isn’t talking with her roommate.

    • My son is overwhelmed by class.

    • My daughter says it is too loud on her floor.

    • I can’t reach my son.

    Concerns with other students

    Concerns with other students

    • You may be more concerned about the choices other students are making and how those choices impact your student.

    Dealing with conflict

    Dealing with Conflict

    • Residence Hall living provides opportunities to develop this life skill

    • Areas where conflict arises

      • Roommates

      • Noise

      • Alcohol and other drugs

      • Sexual relationships

      • Mental Health



    • Encourage your student to talk face-to-face with his or her roommate

      • I have a concern

      • This is what is bothering me

      • What alternative meets both of our needs?

    • Encourage your student to talk with the Community Advisor

    • Other available staff include the Graduate Hall Director and Area Director



    • Encourage your student to ask for what he or she needs

      • To the person being loud

      • To the Community Advisor

    • Encourage your student to contact the Front Desk or University Security if the floor is too loud. Give as much detailed info as possible.

    Alcohol drugs

    Alcohol & Drugs

    • Roommate – ask them to stop

    • Contact CA, Front Desk or University Security

    • Neighboring room or someplace on floor – contact Front Desk or University Security

    • If the student is unsure about how to proceed, have them talk to their CA

    • If the parent wants to intervene, contact the Area Director

    Alcohol and drugs

    Alcohol and Drugs

    • Violations include:

      • Possessing or consuming

      • Possessing empty containers

      • Hosting other people in your room

      • Being in a room were alcohol or containers are present regardless of consumption

    • University responses include:

      • Housing contract termination (50% of remaining room balance). This sanction may result from a first offense that threatens personal safety, a second hosting offense, or repeated lesser offenses

      • Alcohol and drug education programs

    Sexual relationships

    Sexual Relationships

    • The roommate of a person who is pursuing a sexual relationship in their shared room is uniquely impacted.

    • They may be the only person aware of the problem they are experiencing.

    • As a parent, encourage your student to ask the roommate to stop the behavior.

    Mental health

    Mental Health

    • Some students come to college with a pre-existing diagnosis of a mental health concern.

      • Depression, anxiety, others

    • Plan for continuation of care.

    • Resources on campus:

      • Health Service

      • Counseling Center

      • Disability Services Office

    • If a behavior is concerning, report the observation to University Security or the Area Director.

    How to help

    How To Help

    When concerns arise

    When concerns arise

    • Listen to your student

      • “Tell me more.”

      • The needs of your student vs. your needs.

    • Ask meaningful questions

      • “What is frustrating?”

      • “What have you done to try to resolve this issue?”

    • Ask them what they want from you

    Students may want

    Students may want . .

    • To vent their frustration with someone they trust

    • A suggestion for a course of action

      • Communicate needs to individual (s) causing conflict

  • Intervention from someone else

  • Educating yourself

    Educating yourself

    • Housing and Orientation Resources

      • Keep copies for referral

      • Visit

    • Visit to learn of events, policies, procedures, academic deadlines, etc.

    • Ask your student what they have received in the mail or via email from Residential Life and/or Minnesota State Mankato

    Who to contact in residential life

    Who to contact in Residential Life

    If you decide to call

    If you decide to call

    • Call Area Director or Office of Residential Life

    • Area Director

      • has access to the most information

      • works in the building

      • supervises the graduate and student staff

      • can address your concern the most quickly

    Phone numbers

    Phone Numbers

    Residential Life


    Maja Qamar, Gage 507-389-1023

    Stephen Berg, McElroy


    Nicole Faust, Crawford


    Matt Burns, Julia A. Sears


    Resources for parents

    • Please do not call the floor CA. This is an undergrad student who has basic training in helping students.

    • If you are concerned enough about your student to call us, we want to make sure you get professional follow-up.

    What we ll do

    What we’ll do

    • Listen to your concern about your student or other’s behavior

    • Create a plan for addressing the concern



    • Conversation

    • Mediation

    • Room change

    • Student conduct charges

    Data privacy

    Data Privacy

    • Outlined in the electronic FYE Orientation Family Guide

    • In accordance with federal & state law, and to respect your student’s growing independence & self-responsibility, we will refer you to your student for follow-up.

    Rights responsibilities

    Rights & Responsibilities

    • Rights and Responsibilities are listed in the Residence Hall Student Guide.

    • Students who are alleged to have violated policies have the right to “due process.”

    Resources for parents

    • Conflicts can be more successfully addressed when they are addressed early.

    • Resolution of your concern may take longer than you prefer.

    Resources for parents

    • As your student encounters and successfully resolves the challenges ahead of them, they become more competent as adults.

    • They have resources to draw on: parents and University staff play a supporting role in their development.

    Julia a sears residence hall

    Julia A. Sears Residence Hall

    Opening Fall 2008

    Two- and Four- Person Semi-Suites



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