What They Saw in Me

When I was 8 years old, my teacher told my parents that I was failing third grade, that I was mentally retarded (a label used frequently in those days) and that I was essentially unteachable. Thankfully, she didn’t have the last word. Three adults in my neighborhood – a barber, a Methodist minister and a friend’s mother – saw something in me that neither my teacher nor my parents could see. With their strong encouragement and even stronger discipline, I …

Why Your Adult Children Suffer From Anxiety in College

October at colleges and universities may evoke images of falling leaves and football games, but midsemester exams bring a spike in anxiety, the No. 1 mental health problem on campuses. Midterms are not the only reason for anxiety, which causes students to feel overwhelmed and stressed. Most college professors share tales of students’ missed deadlines, classes and assignments, all because of anxiety. A friend told of a student who was in danger of failing because of multiple missed assignments yet …

Advice to Help Your Kids Get the Most From College

A recent family party celebrated a first-born child heading off to college. As the evening wound down, relatives gathered around the picnic table and offered advice to the college freshman, ranging from “Study hard but have some fun” to “Call your mom occasionally.” These suggestions were especially interesting in light of the “Is college worth it?” debate that has developed post-recession. Last spring Gallup released the result of a survey of 30,000 college alumni that found six elements common to …

Why Millennials Need Helicopter Parents to Stop Hovering

The great college move-in begins this week. Getting the students there is the easy part. Getting the parents to leave — in both mind and spirit — is the challenge. Indeed, though some colleges have show-parents-the-exit programs, many parents still hover from home. The University of Oregon has a section about “helicopter parenting” on its counseling services page. Telltale signs range from texting or emailing more than once a day to completing assignments or pushing a particular major. The counseling …

Back to School? Parents, Be on Guard for Student ID Theft

With the kids returning to school, you’ve earned a sigh of relief. But don’t breathe too easy just yet. From elementary through high school, students are 51 times more likely than their parents to be victims of identity theft. College students are ideal (and common) targets — and when hit, they lose more money and take longer to discover their identity theft than any other age group. And with forms, dorms and other threats, a new school year is especially …

Students Turning to Grandparents to Help Pay for College

How are families paying for college? Grandparents. Or, at least, grandparents and other relatives are kicking in more for a student’s education. The amount of money from relatives — often grandparents — and friends rose to an average of $1,247 this year, a 40 percent increase over last year. That’s according to Sallie Mae’s annual report, “How America Pays for College,” which is based on a survey of 1,600 parents and students. Student loan giant Sallie Mae found that families …