We’re spending some time this week covering some topics we want you to be aware of at WFU. We hope these will be helpful for you in understanding all the resources available for your students – tuck these away in your memory now, and use them if you need them.
Before we get started on the list, we want to remind all our new parents of incoming first-years about a wonderful program that will take place during Orientation. It’s called Just for Parents: Helping with the Transition to College and Beyond. The session takes place on Thursday night August 21st (Move-in day) and occurs while your students are in a required residence hall meeting. The session is led by the University Counseling Center and Student Health Service, and covers common issues experienced during the college years, child/parent relationship strategies, healthy boundaries, suggestions for maintaining emotional and physical health, and ways to access the numerous support systems available on campus (that you will see below). This session is a wonderful opportunity to learn more about the college transition and how it might affect you and your student. While the session is open to all (it’s in Wait Chapel), we do ask you to register online here if you want to attend, so we have a sense of numbers.
There are a huge number of support offices across our division of Campus Life that are here to help your students get engaged, involved, and informed. Too numerous to list them all, with apologies to my colleagues – but I’ll hit a few that we most often get asked about in the Parent Programs office, particularly if students are experiencing any difficulties. You can browse the Campus Life website on your own to see other departments and offices, or visit the list of campus resources on the Parents’ Page.
Student Health – your students’ health is a huge concern to parents, I know. This is a big enough topic that we’re going to have an additional Daily Deac on it tomorrow, so stay tuned.
University Counseling Center – this office is a staff of licensed mental health providers who are committed to supporting the well-being of the students with whom they work. Students can seek out the resources of this office – it is free and confidential. This is a wonderful network of support for students – and having an objective third party to speak to about concerns or difficulties can help the student move through a difficult period in a productive way.
Office of the Chaplain – many of our students have a faith tradition that is important to them. Others may be interested in learning more about other traditions. There are faith groups on campus students can be a part of, and the Chaplain’s office also provides pastoral care to students.
LGBTQ Center – the LGBTQ Center provides support and advocacy to Wake Forest University’s lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer and questioning students, faculty and staff, and education to the entire campus community about issues of gender identity and sexual orientation.
Women’s Center – offers students a chance to “hang out in our lounge and study, eat your lunch, or find a little extra support… to attend workshops that build life skills… to nurture a mentoring relationship… to chart creative paths to professional development… to talk about your experiences at Wake Forest or the world beyond… to question and explore issues big and small… to feel a little more rooted, a little more connected… to find a safe space to be.”
Office of Multicultural Affairs – strives to enhance the experience of students from underrepresented groups and foster an appreciation of diversity and inclusion. Students can participate in events and activities sponsored by the office.
The Center for Global Programs and Studies – serves many purposes. They provide assistance for students who want to study abroad, and they also serve international students who are here to take classes. If you are the parent of an international student, this office can be a resource on questions about required forms and documentation and much more.
Residence Life and Housing – works with residence halls and programming for students. Your students’ RA and/or Graduate Hall Director are wonderful first lines of defense for students with questions or concerns. They can help answer questions and direct students to other offices that might be able to assist them.
Office of Personal and Career Development (OPCD) – this office helps with your students’ path from college to career. The office houses many teams. Of particular interest to parents is the Career and Professional Development group – note the buttons across the top of the pages for action items for each year of your students’ education.