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November 20, 2018

Dear Parent or Guardian,

It’s hard to believe we are nearing the end of the semester. Fall weekend came and went, the leaves are down, we’ve experienced our first snowfall, and the campus is quiet for Thanksgiving break. Once the semester resumes there will be only two weeks of classes remaining. This means that by now students will have completed registration for next semester, finalized plans for study abroad, and begun turning their attention to final projects, papers, and performances. There will also be many presentations, late-night study sessions, and a few celebrations to round out the semester.

We have been giving students the following advice all year, but perhaps some reminders from you for the end of the semester can’t hurt! These can be conversations you have during the break.

  • Get organized and manage your time — Looking ahead at the next two weeks, students should allocate enough time in whatever planning system they use so that they don’t have to cram for an exam or pull an infamous all-nighter. Breaking up projects into smaller, manageable portions and speaking with a professor about any course materials or class assignments before they are due may be helpful.
  • Stay healthy and find balance — This may be a stressful time for students, but finding ways to break up their schedule will help reset the mind so they can focus on the next task. The Spectator, our student newspaper, recently shared an opinion about the importance of sleep for concentration, memory, and health. Sleep should not be underestimated. If students have not gone to one of our flu shot clinics, they should get a shot while they are home. It is not too late to do so, and the benefits are proven to far outweigh any drawback. Most importantly, as basic as it sounds, remind them to wash their hands frequently!
  • Seek help – Students who are feeling overwhelmed or anxious about their workload should reach out for support. We offer a wide array of wellness-based services, including in-person meetings with staff or peer counselors and biofeedback in the Counseling Center’s relaxation room. Students can also speak with an RA, faculty advisor, or staff member in the Dean of Students Office, or they can make an appointment with any number of tutors in the Writing Center, Oral Communication Center, or Quantitative and Symbolic Reasoning Center.

For those spending time with their student over break, I hope you have a wonderful visit with lots of opportunities for catching up. For those whose students are unable to be at home, the dining hall has been open daily (except for Thanksgiving day) and our Student Assembly has planned several activities for community gatherings.

This is a very busy time on campus, and some students may miss these important reminders:

  • Winter Break — Our residence halls will close for break at noon on Saturday, December 15.  Information regarding transportation to the airport will be sent during the first week of December. Students needing transportation should sign up early since spots are limited.
  • Storage — Students studying abroad next semester who do not want to take all of their belongings home or cannot do so should make arrangements with one of the local storage facilities.
  • Career Center — Students thinking about an internship or job shadowing opportunity should make contact with the Career Center. The Center’s calendar has details about upcoming sessions that focus on communicating effectively in a cover letter, tips and strategies for finding an internship, or becoming a Peer Advisor in the Center. You should also have received information from the Career Center about job shadowing and internship possibilities. Please encourage your student to take advantage of these opportunities. Your support would be greatly appreciated.

I wish you all a wonderful and peaceful Thanksgiving.


Terry Martinez
Vice President and Dean of Students


Contact Name

Dean of Students Office

Office Location
Elihu Root House
8:30 a.m.-4:30 p.m.
8:30 a.m.-4:30 p.m.
8:30 a.m.-4:30 p.m.
8:30 a.m.-4:30 p.m.
8:30 a.m.-4:30 p.m.

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