Moving your student to college is often filled with stress, sweat and emotion.  So being prepared is vital to making the most of this moment and leaving your student on campus both confident and secure.

Some elements of moving to college remain similar to when you may have moved on to campus.  However, there are some large differences and here are a few to recognize:

  1. Campus life is more convenient.  Many schools hire moving and logistics companies to assist families with move-in day.  Schools like Arizona State make moving on to campus more like boarding a cruise ship.
  2. Safety is a fundamental concern.  Nearly all schools promote campus safety to students from the first day.  You can easily recognize posters in hallways and promotions for “blue safety-lights” across many campuses. Unlocked dorm room doors are not smart.  Check the locks and purchase affordable renters insurance.  Student-specific renters insurance programs are affordable and have low deductibles, just be sure to get not just property insurance but real renters insurance that includes coverage for both personal property and personal liability.
  3. Studnet health & well-being are integrated within student housing and academic life.  Nearly all schools remind students to stay healthy and to consider their well-being an essential part of student success.  Take note of what campus health programs are available to your student and encourage your student to learn about programs that will keep them health

In addition to these changes, some tips are always useful.  Vicki Nelson – of College Parent Central suggest the following Move-In Day Tips:4

  • Don’t set up the room for your student.  Let her make her own decisions – probably with her roommate.  This will be her space.  Let her work at making it hers.
  • Don’t plan on taking your student out to dinner.  If you would like a final, celebratory family dinner, plan on doing it the night before.  Once students have moved in, they will need to begin to make connections with their new roommates and dorm mates.  Sharing a common meal – in the dining hall or by going out together is a great time for them to make those connections.  Let them have this time for that.
  • Don’t linger.  Many colleges actually have a “farewell” ceremony of sorts to help define the moment of leaving.  If your student’s school has a planned event, take the hint and leave afterward.  If the school does not do something official, use your judgment, but once she is moved in, plan to head out so that she can settle in on her own.