Your College Student’s Senioritis: Recognizing and Addressing It

This is the second of two posts about the senioritis sometimes experienced by college seniors.  In our first post we looked at some of the roots or causes of your student’s feelings.  In this post, we’ll consider what this senioritis may look like and how you, as a parent, might help your student cope.

In many ways, although the causes may differ, college senioritis may look very similar to high school senioritis.  Your usually motivated student suddenly loses interest in his coursework, missing classes and deadlines for assignments.  He doesn’t seem to care about his work and only puts forth a partial effort.  His grades are in jeopardy of slipping and he doesn’t seem to care.

Although it is possible that this may be due to ”school fatigue” after sixteen or more years of school, we discussed in our last post several other possible causes.  These causes may lead to other symptoms that indicate that your student is a victim of senioritis.

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Is Your College Senior Suffering from Senioritis? 13 Reasons Why It May Not Be What You Think

This is the first of two posts about the senioritis sometimes experienced by college seniors.  In this post we look at some of the roots or causes of your student’s feelings.  In our next post, we’ll consider what this senioritis may look like and how you, as a parent, might help your student cope.

We hear a lot about senioritis and high school seniors.  It’s that apathy and lack of motivation that hits in the latter part of their senior year when they’ve been accepted to college and they let their guard down and struggle to keep their grades up and stay focused on school.  Severe senioritis in that last year of high school could even result in having a college rescind a student’s admission, so it can be a serious ailment.

We hear less about senioritis during the last year of college, but it exists.  Often, it looks much like high school senioritis.  Your student has been in school now for sixteen or more years, and he is tired of being a student, loses focus and motivation, skips classes, does poorly on assignments, and generally appears unengaged.

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Saying “No Thank You” to a College Acceptance

That long college application process is over.  Your student finished the applications, the essays, the SAT months ago.  You and your student have survived the weeks or months of waiting.  The acceptances have come in and your student has finally, agonizingly, made a decision.  She knows where she will be going to college.  You’ve even submitted the deposit.  You and your student are ready for a breather.

There’s one more task which your student needs to do.  She needs to let the other colleges which accepted her know that she won’t be attending.  This isn’t a big job, but it sometimes feels like an awkward job.  It’s not easy to say, ”No thank you” to a college after you’ve fought to get in.  It feels as though you are rejecting the college.  But this is an important part of the college admission process.

Once your student has made the final decision and notified his college of choice, remind him to let the others know that he won’t be attending.  Students should notify the college in writing.  Some colleges even include a postcard in their admissions packet.  If there isn’t an easy form, a simple note,  letter, or e-mail is fine.

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Accepted to College — Now What?

Congratulations!  Your student has been accepted — perhaps to one college, perhaps to several.  Your student may be facing a difficult decision, or she may know exactly where she wants to go.  Either way, you and your student may be wondering what you do next.

Once your student has been accepted, next steps will depend on whether she needs more information before making her decision or whether that decision is made.

Making the decision

If your student has received multiple acceptances and is in the process of deciding which college to choose, gather as much information as possible about the colleges, and review what your student is looking for in a college.

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If Your College Student Has Food Allergies — What to Do, Who to Know

If you are sending your student off to college with food allergies, you may be concerned.  Of course, your degree of concern will depend on the degree of seriousness of your student’s allergies.  One thing to keep in mind is that managing these allergies is probably not new for your student.  He may have had practice for many years.

If your student has not taken the lead on managing his allergies before now, do all that you can to let him be in charge while he is still living at home.  Make him responsible for reading food labels, taking medication, monitoring symptoms, etc.  This will give him the confidence to know that he will be able to manage once he is at school and will help him take this responsibility seriously.  Obviously, it will give you important peace of mind as well.

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When Your College Student Is Struggling Or In Trouble

You send your college student off to college with high hopes.  It was a long road of applications, SATs, essays, and finally decision making.  You and your college student have survived and now you are ready to sit back and watch him thrive in the environment that he chose.

Suddenly, things are not going as planned.  Your student is struggling and having difficulty.  Your student may or may not be sharing details with you, but you sense that something is wrong.  You feel completely helpless, and you want to help.  This is every college parent’s nightmare.

Your student may be struggling for any number of reasons — from lack of preparedness, lack of motivation, lack of perseverance, too much partying, mental or emotional difficulties, or just plain homesickness.  Whatever the reason, you’re at a loss for where to turn.

Here at College Parent Central, we want to help you navigate all of the phases of college parenting, and for many families that includes navigating the dark waters of a student in trouble.

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