The College Parent Central Year in Review: Thirteen Favorite Articles of 2013

It’s that time of year when we can’t quite decide whether to look backwards at the year that is just ending or to look ahead at the year about to begin.  We probably need to do a little bit of both.  Looking back gives us some perspective to look ahead, and think about our goals and plans for the new year based on where we’ve come.

So before we look ahead, make plans, make resolutions we probably won’t keep, or set goals for 2014, we’d like to take a moment to look back at some of our favorite articles for 2013.  Some are College Parent Central posts, and others are a few of the articles we’ve shared in our monthly News and Views.  These are the articles that, to us, speak most about the essence of the college parent role and/or speak to those ideas and issues that most affect the way we relate to our college sons and daughters.

We invite you to take a few minutes to review these articles, and to think about how you view your role.  How have you grown into the role over the past year?  Where might you and your college student go next year?

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College Parents: Hold That Advice!

Your student is home from college for a break.  It is your chance to catch up and touch bases about the semester.  Perhaps it hasn’t gone as well as everyone had hoped.  Perhaps your student is concerned about choosing or changing a major.  Perhaps their social life isn’t what they had hoped — or perhaps there is too much social life.  Whatever the issue might be, as college parents, we feel that we this is our chance — and probably our responsibility — to share important advice with our student.

But wait!  That might not be what your student needs most from you right now.

What your student might need most — at least for a while — is for you to be a sounding board.

Serving as a Sounding Board

One definition of a sounding board is a thin partition behind a podium to reflect the speaker’s sound out to the audience.  It is actually sometimes called a ”tester.”  Of course, another definition is a person who listens to someone to allow the speaker to try out or rehearse an idea in order to explore it more fully, evaluate it or to measure its acceptability.

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