As Finals Approach

Your Deac’s first set of college final exams is just around the corner. Finals run December 6-11.

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 years past. Click to enlarge.

There will be a lot of work in the next two weeks – your Deac will be writing final papers and studying for final exams – and no small amount of stress, especially since this is your student’s first time taking college level finals. So how best can you support your student in the coming days?

Urge them 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 helps you get away from the immediate pressing items so that the student can clear their 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 their 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


Breathing techniques

For those interested in the how-tos of mindfulness, including breathing and relaxation techniques, the University Counseling Center has information online, and we have a Mindful Wake community that could be a great resource for your students. Our Office of Wellbeing also has aromatherapy, massage therapy (for a fee), as well as massage chairs in their living room.

Just a few minutes of wellbeing activities each day could help relieve tension and help your Deacs prep for finals in the most optimal way.

And remind them – by telling them this very directly and plainly – that your love is not dependent on their grades or their achievements. Your love is unconditional and unchanging. They may not tell you they need to hear it, but it will mean the world to them to hear it.


— by Betsy Chapman, Ph.D. (’92, MA ’94)


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 handle their business as independently as possible. Use the Stop, Drop, and Roll method when your student contacts you with a problem, a decision to make, etc.

Orientation 2021 presentations