Parents and Families Can Help
We congratulate you on supporting your student and helping her find a university that’s
the right fit to complete her degree. There are many things you can do to help your
daughter, granddaughter, sister, mom or friend make the college search, selection
and admission process easier. How you can help depends largely on your student’s age,
grade and life circumstances.
Here are the ways you can help the following students:
- High School Students (freshman through senior year)
- Middle School Students
- Transfer Students
- Adult Students
- Help with the admission process. It is best to complete admission applications during the fall semester, and your student will need your help to keep her on track and on time!
- Visit campuses with your student. Even if you’ve visited campuses already, we encourage you to visit campus a second time as your student narrows her college selection. A second visit will be more involved, like sitting in on a class or spending a night in the residence hall.
- Look for scholarships. Encourage your student to apply for scholarships and help her locate resources to do this.
- Help with financial aid process. To apply for financial aid and scholarships, your student will need access to your personal and financial information to complete forms. Make yourself available to help her with this, and remember to submit the FAFSA by March 1 to get the most financial aid possible.
- Explore colleges. Help your student search for colleges by researching options online and discussing what features of a college (such as size, location, academic programs, extracurricular activities) are most important to your student.
- Attend college fairs with your student. In addition to attending college fairs, encourage your student to visit the college representatives that come to her high school.
- Visit college campuses with your student. There’s no better way to explore a college than to take a campus tour. Go with your student to support her during this exciting time, and don’t be afraid to ask questions during your visit.
- Discuss how you’ll afford college. This is an important conversation to have with your student, and the earlier you have it, the better. She needs to know if you are planning to help her pay for college and how much you’re expecting her to contribute towards funding her education.
- Support your student’s academic achievements. Help keep your student focused on her academics. Encourage her to study hard and get good grades. Colleges look at academics from all four years of high school.
- Promote getting involved in extracurricular activities. Colleges like to see students who are involved in extracurricular activities, community service and other clubs or activities of interest. Encourage her to participate and take on leadership roles.
- Encourage your student to take the PLAN test. This test will help your student learn more about career options so she can start making a plan for her future. Go with her to ask her guidance counselor about taking this test.
- Discuss career interests. Talk with your student about her possible career interests and explain to her more about your career and what you do.
- Encourage job shadowing. Help your student find a professional to job shadow in a career field she is interested in exploring.
- Support personality and interest exploration. Encourage your student to take personality and interest tests or inventories to help her find out more about what she likes and what careers might be a good match for her interests and talents.
- Look into summer camps. Many universities and other organizations offer college prep camps or camps related to certain academic interests or career paths.
- Apply for scholarships for pre-college programs. The Wisconsin Department of Public Instruction offers scholarship for students attending up to three pre-college programs. Learn more.
- Discuss high school expectations. Before your student starts high school, talk with her about the importance of high school and its impact on her future college choices.
- Encourage applying early. As soon as the Admission Office receives her application and transcripts, our counselors can perform a credit evaluation so the student will know what coursework will transfer to Mount Mary. Encourage her to apply for admission and submit all transcripts to Mount Mary as soon as possible.
- Promote involvement in extracurricular activities. Encourage your student to get involved and take on leadership roles in student activities, community service or study groups.
- Help her find resources to support her success. Remind your student that there are support services like tutoring, child care, career counseling and personal counseling available at Mount Mary, and let her know it’s okay to ask for help!
- Put yourself in her shoes. Whether it’s your mom, sister or daughter going back to school, she’s likely being pulled in many different directions and wearing many different hats. She may face new challenges in adding a new role as student. Sometimes just a little patience and understanding goes a long way. Sometimes she may need you to boost her spirits and remind her why she is working so hard: to achieve her goals.
- Encourage involvement in student activities. Involvement in extracurricular activities and study groups helps your student develop leadership skills and helps with career preparation that will be key her success. Encourage her to get involved.
- Help her find resources to support her success. Remind your student that there are support services like tutoring, child care, career counseling and personal counseling available at Mount Mary, and let her know that it’s okay to ask for help!
- Respect her quiet study time.
- Lighten her load. She may need you to help more around the house or running errands, or she may need a babysitter or help caring for elderly parents so she can spend time studying, working on a project or attending class. She has a lot going on and may not ask you for help, but offer any assistance you can and she will appreciate it!