Parents’ College Visit

It has been a few weeks since you said goodbye to your college student and watched through the rear-view mirror as you pulled away.  You can hardly believe it’s that time of life for you and your student.  Whether they have called every day or once since you’ve left, a parents’ college visit is a good way to get reconnected.  So take advantage of these important visits.

Scheduled Parents’ College Visit:

Many colleges see the need for a parents’ weekend.    These scheduled events usually happen in the fall and are very beneficial for both the student and the parent.  It’s a time to reconnect the family, but also a time to see your student in the “normal” flow of college life.  These weekends are full of events that are academic, like visiting a class; social, like attending a play; or collegiate, like attending a college sporting event.

Here are some tips to remember when attending the scheduled parents’ college visit.  Make sure you know the schedule.  An event schedule is usually posted on the college’s website well in advance of your visit.  Talk with your student and ask what events they would enjoy.  While the schedule is a great place to start, don’t feel as if you have to follow it exactly.  Sometimes you need to do your own thing.  The most important part of this trip is to connect with your student and let them show you they are doing just fine.

Surprise Parents’ College Visit:

While scheduled visits are great, sometimes a surprise parents’ college visit can be just as effective.  These surprise visits can come at just the right moment to add an extra boost to your student.  In fact, who knows your student better than you!

But before you jump in the car and drive a few hours, there are a couple of things that you need to consider.  Make sure you know your student’s schedule.  Don’t make a surprise visit when your student is overwhelmed with school work or tests.  This will add a great amount of stress for both you and your student.  So make sure you check your student’s schedule.  Also, make sure you check the holiday calendar and that your student will not be traveling to a fellow student’s house for the weekend or holiday.  You would be really surprised if you showed up on campus and your student was in another state with their roommate.  I am sure you know how to get the pertinent information without giving away your surprise visit.

There is no perfect reason for a parent’s college visit, but there are plenty of benefits.  So make sure you do the proper planning to make your college visit the most beneficial.  In fact, you may want to calculate these college visits into your college financial plan.


Author: Dorothy Mautte

Dorothy is President and Chief Consultant for College4Less™ a College Funding Planning Company associated with the Strategic Education Technologies Advisors and The College Planning Network (CPN). CPN is a network of financial professionals who specialize in helping “families successfully navigate the college admissions and financial aid planning process so their children can attend the college of their choice − regardless of the cost.” Dorothy has served in the Financial Services Industry for over 35 years and has helped hundreds of families plan for college. Whether you have high-school aged children or younger we can help you find the best resources available for all your college needs and design a strategy for you to pay your share and still be able to retire Set for Life without risk.