Happy Anniversary! College Parent Central Has Just Turned Eight!

We try not to engage in too much self-congratulation, but we’re taking a moment to wish ourselves a Happy Anniversary!  Eight years ago, on April 1, 2009 (Yes, it was April Fools Day!), the College Parent Central website was launched with the hope that we could help parents understand and make the transition to a new style of parenting as their sons and daughters became college students.

We continue to believe, as we did eight years ago, that parents need information and guidance in order to best support their college student to succeed. We’ve been more than pleased throughout the last eight years to hear from many parents who have found that our information has, indeed, helped them transition and help their students.

Thank you to those who have supported us and shared our information with others!

Our purpose

It is always a good idea, from time to time, to reflect on your roots.  Each time we look back to the purpose that drove us to launch College Parent Central, we reaffirm that our basic principles haven’t changed.

  • We believe that parents can be important partners in their child’s education from pre-school through college.
  • We believe that most parents want to be involved in their child’s college experience.
  • We believe that parents do have a place in their child’s college experience.
  • We believe that many parents don’t know how to be involved in their child’s college experience.
  • We believe that many parents don’t understand today’s college experience. (Those of us who attended college ourselves need to learn how the college experience has changed in the twenty-first century.)

Eight years later, some of the subjects of our posts may have changed in ways we couldn’t have imagined eight years ago, but the underlying principles that anchor us and drive us remain the same.

Our journey

In spite of unchanging principles, we’ve continued to evolve and grow over the last eight years.

One of the areas which has evolved has been the increasing recognition – by parents, students, and educators – that students need to be better prepared for college.  Many high schools are working to increase students’ academic readiness.  This is important.  We’ve begun to include more and more articles that can help parents help their students get ready for college success.  We believe that parents can no longer rely solely on the schools to prepare students – especially in the vitally important area of softer skills or life skills.  Look for more emphasis on college readiness in the future.

We have also focused more recently on helping parents find ways to work with their student when their student struggles or takes a detour.  More and more students take a winding, and often longer journey through college and parents need to know how to help students value their experiences – even their experiences of detour or failure.  As the number of college students struggling with anxiety, stress, and depression grows, and as many students continue to struggle with finding balance in their academic lives, parents continue to need information and support as they work to guide their students through difficult times.  We hope to be able to continue to provide some of that support.

Milestones 

Anniversaries continue to be the ideal time to reflect.  We’ve celebrated some milestones over the past year and we’re always happy to share them.

  • We have published nearly 650 articles. (We’re working now to eliminate some out-of-date articles and update others. Be sure to take some time to look back through our archives.)
  • We will soon be approaching two million visitors to the website.
  • We have nearly 140 colleges, universities and high schools who share our material with their parents and students.
  • We continue to connect with nearly 2000 followers through Twitter. (@collparcentral)
  • We share our monthly newsletter with nearly 1500 parents and professionals. (Join them by signing up at the end of this post.)

Moving forward

Eight years ago, we might not have predicted that we would still be here, and still reaching out to more and more parents eight years later.  We are hesitant to begin to predict what’s ahead.

We look forward to continuing to connect with and support parents as they enter the college parent journey – and even earlier as they think about preparing themselves and their student for the transition.

In the near future, we are excited about some changes coming up.  Look for our newly designed website coming in June.  We’ll have a fresh new look, hopefully some easier ways of finding the information that you need, but the same solid information you’ve found helpful in the past.

We’re redesigning our workshops to focus more on some of the information that parents need and want.  If you have a high school parent group, a group of college parents, or students who could use some inspiration and suggestions, we hope you’ll contact us.  Let’s talk.

If you are a college parent or a high school parent, we hope that you will find College Parent Central a place where you feel validated in the importance of your role.  We said it best eight years ago, “We hope that you will find information, support, and a celebration of the amazing experience of having a child in college.”  This is an incredible journey.

If there are topics you’d like us to cover, or you have found our information useful in the past, please leave a comment and let us know that.  Help us to shape the future of College Parent Central!

Thanks for joining us on our own journey and adventure!


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