Cue the balloons and confetti! We’re celebrating our anniversary, or birthday, or blog day! On April Fools Day 2009, we launched ourselves into the unknown and began College Parent Central. We hoped that we might help parents as they accompanied their students on the college journey to understand more about the college experience and about their role in the process. We thought we had a good idea, but we didn’t know what to expect.
It’s now been nine years and we’re still going. We still believe there’s lots for parents to learn and understand in order to help their students prepare for, transition to, and succeed in college. We’ve been pleased, throughout the past nine years, to hear from so many parents who have found our information helpful. If you’ve landed on College Parent Central, and you are reading this, we hope you find what you need here, too.
We’re grateful for the many parents, educators and counselors who have shared our information with others, who have provided us with helpful feedback, and who have taught us so much over the years.
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.)
Anniversaries and birthdays are often times to mark milestones as well as times to reflect. We’ve celebrated some milestones over the past year and we’re always excited to share them.
- Perhaps one of our biggest accomplishments this year was the redesign of our website. We launched our new and updated look in November 2017. Our new site has more breathing room, provides easier reading, and more visuals (sometimes a picture is worth a thousand words.) We added new ways of navigating around the site — tabs at the top and some refreshed categories. If you look at our site on a phone or tablet, you’ll also find the new College Parent Central more mobile friendly. We also expanded our Resources section to help you find additional information and ways to support your student.
- We’ve actually reduced the number of articles on our site by almost a third. We now have just under 600 articles. Many of our earlier articles were outdated and it was time to let them go. Others were redundant and we’ve consolidated many articles to provide more information in one spot so you can avoid skipping from article to article. We’re not providing less information, but rather information that is easier to find and more up to date. Take some time to browse our categories and find the information that you need.
- We’ve had over 2.5 million visitors to College Parent Central. We’re glad you’re one of them.
- We’re especially proud of the fact that over 150 high schools and colleges share our information with their parents and students. We respect the work being done by high school counselors and college personnel working with parents. We’re pleased that the people who work with students and their parents find our information useful.
- We’ve had fun connecting with over 2000 Twitter followers this year. Thanks for following us on this journey. If you’d like to join us on Twitter we’re @collparcentral.
- We enjoy reaching out to the more than 1500 of you who receive our monthly newsletter. It’s our opportunity to share some extra information in a timely way. If you’re not on our mailing list, join us by signing up at the end of this article.
Moving toward marking a decade
As we march toward the ten year mark, we don’t know what the next year will bring.
Nine years ago, we felt the college parent world was a bit of a lonely place. We’re pleased to have so much company now. More and more people are recognizing college parents’ need for support. More is being written. (Check out the more than 40 book reviews on our site.) More conversation is taking place. Parents don’t need to figure everything out alone. We’re interested to see topics we wrote about nine years ago being explored now. (OK, we like to think we might have been just a bit ahead of the curve.)
We hope to continue to work with and support parents as they reach this new stage of parenting. We’d like to work more with parents who are supporting their First Generation students. We’d also like to meet more of you in person — perhaps by talking to your parent group, or just a group of your friends. (Check out our Workshops page for more information.) Let’s talk.
And then, we’re just interested to see what else comes along.
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 nine 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, and we’re pleased to join you.
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!
And then cue the anniversary confetti!!