The Stakes Are High

Dear parents and families, 

As we begin the much-anticipated fall semester, I write to you asking for your assistance. Today, I shared the following video message with your students, outlining the realities of life on campus this fall and the need for every individual’s commitment to the health and safety of the greater community. 

In the past few days, we have watched as other colleges and universities have had to return to remote learning, shut down and take other drastic measures for the good of public health. This was not because of classroom or residence hall interaction; it was because of social gatherings — both large and small, on and off campus — in which face coverings and social distancing did not occur. 

Our goal – what students desire and what we have worked all summer to create – is to have as full a college life on campus as possible this fall. In order to achieve that goal, please reiterate to your students the need for vigilance in adhering to public health guidelines – wearing a cloth face covering, washing hands frequently, monitoring symptoms daily, staying six feet apart and refraining from large gatherings. We need them to be extra safe and cautious in these times for the sake of their health and the health of our entire community. 

Staying here for the full semester will require that they do the little things every day and avoid the big things – parties that lack control – every night. This is not news, but it is time to match knowledge with action. One large gathering, one party that infects a large number of people, can close us down. Please help us help our students achieve what they want most – to be here and experience as much of a college life as these conditions can allow.

Over decades of working with young people, our research shows that a call on a Friday afternoon from loved ones helps students make good decisions throughout the weekend. Would you consider checking in on your student and gently remind them that they can make a difference in the life they aspire to live here? 

We need everyone’s cooperation so that we can deliver on what we all want and what we’ve worked hard to make possible – your students’ presence here. We need to work together as an entire community, taking extra care and caution, in these challenging times. 

Thank you for your partnership and commitment. 

With gratitude, 

Nathan O. Hatch


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 2020 slide shows

Parent and family Orientation sessions are available online.