College and Children

by Carolann Sherwood about a year ago in college

Look for the red flags before sending your child off to college.

College and Children

Is Your Child College Material?

Not all children are cut out for college, and I feel that parents need to realize and respect this in the child. Your child does not have to go to college to become a success in life.

It is that time of year where students and their parents are looking at colleges for entrance in the coming fall. Be as wise as an owl in your choice of colleges because not all schools of higher education are created equal, nor are all children college material.

There are many occupational training schools for children who have no interest in college. I am of the opinion that if your child is not interested in college then do not waste time and money in sending them where they do not want to go.

I also know that sometimes parents try to live their life through their children, molding the child into something that you the parents want in your personal life but never achieved certain dreams and desires. Some parents attempt to have their children attain the dreams and desires of the parent.

Students

Do not pick the first college you think you want to attend. Go on a tour of the college with your parents, grandparents, or other advocates and ask questions. Ask a lot of questions. Visit the admissions office and be aware of any 'red flags.' Go on several college campus tours before signing up at any university.

The expectations of your child entering college open a new and exciting chapter in your life and that of your child's.

This new college life for the student is an anxious time for parents and students alike. Most all students and parents should want to tour colleges to make a well-informed college choice. Students should never visit a college on their own, but need to take a significant adult.

Students should have a big say in what college they are most interested in attending. Some parents give their child no option but to do what they, the parent, wants. It is generally up to the parents if a particular college choice fits their student's needs and financial budget.

Most students live for the moment and give no consideration as to the mounting educational debt they are about to acquire, nor the years it is going to take to pay off this student debt. It is for these reasons that the student needs a say in where they want to learn.

Some parents do not give their student any say in what college they enter, and the student must abide by the parent's decision. If the student does not have an interest in this college or does not want to be at the college choice of the parents, chances are the student will not thrive to do the best they can do. If the student is unhappy with a choice of college they may even drop out.

My husband and I went on a few college tours with our two sons. Our daughter chose our community college for her basics and then signed up for nurses training. Years prior I attended the same college for my primary studies, so I was very familiar with the campus, but for her sake, we took the tour.

We always left the type of college up to our three children, but we made sure we knew about the college through gathering all the information possible and through scheduled tours of the campus.

A Good First Impression Is Critical

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You only get one chance to make a Good First Impression

A good first impression is vital in the arena of job interviews, team play, and colleges. You never get another first impression, so make sure you do it right the first time.

  • Take pride in yourself in a neat, clean, and appropriate appearance.
  • Carry a smile on your face.
  • Ask plenty of questions.
  • Leave any negative attitudes at home.
  • Know how to communicate effectively with college staff
  • Hone into a perfect appearance, and attitude, etiquette.

First Impressions by Parents and Students Is Critical

The first thing that I noticed when I went on college tours with our children was the appearance of the campus and the students' dress and behavior as we strolled across campus and through the halls. I noticed if the college was well-manicured inside and out and presented a trash-free environment.

"First Impressions are the Most Important."

There is something to be said about first impressions of the college you tour with your student because negative thoughts about your college pick are never going to change.

Ask the right questions and know if the college selected is what fits your student's educational needs, your budget, and the ability to repay any student loans. I did not want any college taking advantage of my child because this was their first year and I knew that my children were experienced in the admissions process.

If you and your child plan on sitting down with any facility member, dress the part and put forth your best effort to make a good impression.

Take A Few College Tours

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First impressions by parents and students is critical

For the student in choosing the right college.

The first thing that I noticed when I went on our college tours was the appearance of the campus and the students' dress and behavior as we strolled across campus and through the halls. I noticed if the college was well-manicured and trash-free.

Small Details of Colleges Can Be Most Important

While touring colleges with our children I paid close attention to more of the minor details while my husband focused on other things he felt more important. After a tour, we combined all of our knowledge and assessed our findings.

Freshman and Junior Students Are Inexperienced to Tour Colleges without Parent Help

I felt that our children were still learning as each of our kids entered a college atmosphere. We had to make our kids know that they are starting at the bottom of the higher educational ladder.

Not all kids are alike, but I found that two of my children were too timid to ask forward questions, demanding an excellent and to the point answer by college tour guides or other college leaders.

My children had set these people on a pedestal, and each of the kids felt non-significant or little. I think our sons felt too insignificant to bother anyone above them with needless questions. If a question nags at you for an honest answer remember that no question is too stupid to be asked.

I quickly tried to dispel this feeling of insignificance and reinforce the fact that these boys were, in essence, a V.I.P. I told all of our kids that they are important in countless ways.

"If it were not for you, applying to your college of choice the staff at that college would soon be out of a job. You are the most important person here, after all, you are their paycheck."

Other parents relayed to me this same problem, so I did not feel like I was the only parent whose children felt this way. Slowly our boys and daughter took on a different attitude of importance as a new college student.

A lot of freshman and junior college students are too inexperienced to ask the right questions and know if the college they select is what will fit their

  • Educational needs
  • Parent's budget
  • The student and parent ability to repay any student loans

I did not want any college taking advantage of my child because this was their first year and they were inexperienced in the admissions process.

A College Tour Guide Can Make or Break a College Decision

Each college campus has helpful information, and this is extremely important to the parents, the students, and the college. If the college does not employ knowledgeable college tour guides, the college stands to risk losing the student.

All of our questions directed to our tour guide may seem petty, but I felt my questions were essential to help my child and us decide on the right college. I presented some of the following questions to our college tour guide.

  • How long had our guide attended this college and what was their educational focus?
  • What activities did this campus/student guide enjoy the most on campus?
  • What are some of the more popular events on campus?
  • Did our tour guide have to work as much as they could to help support their educational needs?
  • Is college food good?
  • Did our tour guide make a good first impression with their dress and behavior?
  • Was our tour guide prompt and friendly?
  • Did the tour guide take time to answer questions from parents and students?
  • Was the guide flexible with time and questions?
  • Did this college support the non-use of smoking, alcohol, and drugs on or off campus?

The Right Choice of College

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Do you feel confident that your child and you made the right college campus choice?

If your child makes the right college campus choice, they will follow and stick to their career path, attaining that important degree to which no one can take from them.

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Read next: The Unconventional College Life
Carolann Sherwood

Professional nurse for over 40 years

Owned a children's daycare, eight years

Owned an upper scale clothing resale shop

A freelance writer 

Editor since 2010 on a writing platform site

A published author, "Return To The Past" available on Amazon

See all posts by Carolann Sherwood