Jacki’s College Send-off Message

It was so great to see so many of our college freshmen and their parents at the Summer College Send-off Luncheon, seeing all the kids come together and meet people who are going to the same college or maybe some students who are already there. It’s important that all our kids get together and celebrate the journey. It’s time to enjoy yourselves and get a pat on the back.

A huge thank you to Justin Uribe and John Barrios, who put the college experience into perspective. It was amazing to have two of our very own El Rancho students share their first-hand college reality.

Gilbert spoke about the importance of time management for college students and how in the beginning, it may seem like they have more free time than they actually do. He emphasized keeping up with online curriculum as well as classroom assignments and that making friends with upperclassmen would benefit them. And while studying, using the library and other resources is critical, he reminded them not to forget to schedule some fun into the mix for their own well-being.

I had the opportunity to share three tips with everyone there and I’d like to share them here not only for those who may have missed the luncheon, but also because they apply to college students everywhere.

1. Get involved! You need to be a part of your college community. There are so many opportunities on campus to learn about new subjects or discover new interests and evolve. You might be shy, but college gives you a chance to change. Parents, please understand that students need to be at school, that it’s not just about books and classes and studying. You’ll find that it’s about becoming what or who you are.

2. Get to know your professors. They are there to teach you, so don’t be afraid to ask for help. Show up during office hours more than once, show an interest in the subject and let them see you are trying. These are the people that you might need to write you a letter of reference, or those you want to think of you when they have a research project that comes up down the line. A good relationship with your professors will go a long way.

3. Call your Mom and Dad. Your parents may not know what’s going on and want to be part of your experience. Keep in mind that your family is going through some dynamic changes and this will take some getting used to, but they are on the journey with you. Your parents are your biggest advocates and will lift you up when you need it the most.

There is one more thing I’d like to impress upon you, now that you’re venturing off to college campuses. Be smart. Let everyone know where you are going when you go out and when you expect to be back. Remember no is no and don’t put yourself in a position to be misunderstood.