As Finals Approach

Your Deacs’ first set of college final exams is just around the corner.

A to-do list from a student studying for finals in the ZSR Library.

A to-do list from a student studying for finals in the ZSR Library. Click to enlarge.

There is much to be done – final papers, preparation for final exams, packing to come home for winter break – and no small amount of stress, especially since this is your student’s first time taking college level finals. How best can you support your student in the coming days and weeks?

Urge him or her to relax.

It sounds counterintuitive – Relax? When there’s still so much I have to do? – but it could be the key to a successful end to the semester.

Relaxation is a way to get away from the immediate pressing items so that the student can clear his/her mind and come back recharged and refreshed and able to tackle the work ahead. If a student doesn’t relieve tension and stress, that stress can build upon itself and can become a detriment to his/her ability to manage the end-of-semester workload.

Relaxation can take many forms:

  • Taking a walk or run or getting some physical exercise
  • Listening to calming music
  • Taking an hour off to watch a favorite TV show or spend time with friends
  • Getting a massage or some other personal service that your student finds relaxing
  • Meditation
  • Breathing techniques

For those interested in the how-tos of mindfulness, including breathing and relaxation techniques, the University Counseling Center has information online. Just a few minutes of these activities each day can help relieve tension.

College Life has a web site with tips on how to reduce stress in college students. If your student is looking for ideas, you can share these.

Also, make sure your students take some time during winter break to relax and reflect on their semester. Winter break is an ideal time for students to take some deep breaths, celebrate their successful first semester, and get mentally ready for the spring semester. College Life has some tips here.


To contact the Office of Family Engagement, please visit our contact page.

If Your Student Has a Problem

One of the best ways parents/families can help their students is to let them solve their own problems. Use the Stop, Drop, and Roll method when your student contacts you with a problem.  The flyer also lists contact information for serious concerns where family intervention might be appropriate.

Orientation 2017 slide shows

Select slide shows from Orientation sessions are available online.