The First Six Weeks of College are Critical for the Success of College Students

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Most parents do know this but the first six weeks of college are crucial to the studentÂ?s success. Good communication with parents is a huge factor in studentsÂ? success or failure. Simple things such as a subscription to a hometown newspaper can make a big difference in keeping the dialog open. With back to school season starting now, parents are interested in how they can help as their children go off to college.

With plenty of free time and few rules (compared to home) many students start drinking to excess during the first six weeks of college. According to the National Advisory Council on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism every year 500,000 college age students are injured while under the influence, 70,000 are victims of sexual assault or date rape where alcohol is a factor and 25% have problems at college such as missing class, missing assignments and doing badly on exams because of alcohol abuse. Communication with a student before and after he or she begins college has a huge impact on whether or not alcohol abuse will be a factor in their college life. With about a third of first year students dropping out their fist year, the experts at offer a series of free guides to help parents and students with the transition.


How can parents keep the lines of communication open so that college students still feel connected to family at home? It can be tricky for parents to talk to students without them feeling smothered, judged or not trusted. The college safety experts at put together a free guide on fun communication tips for parents. Communication builds strong emotional health and self-confidence.

This creates a pattern of success and gives college students the strength to avoid drugs, alcohol abuse and promiscuity. Here are some fun tips from the free guide:

•    Send them a subscription to your hometown newspaper (or forward the local community publication)

•    Exchange a joke of the day by email

•    Put together a funky family photo stuff with funny pictures - put on calendars, mugs, magnets

•    Tape record a dinner conversation where you include them in the conversation

•    Send gift certificates to restaurants in the area (sometimes these can be ordered online)

•    Have younger siblings or cousins send fridge drawings

•    Set up a family website with pictures and updates

•    Send postcards from home with funny stories or jokes on them

•    Parents can exchange their own school war stories weekly with their student via mail or email

•    Send them printed or emailed links to funny off-beat stories they can share with friends

•    Put together gift baskets, for example, popcorn of the month, cookie basket of the month or other special treats

•    Send them an inexpensive digital camera and encourage them to send pictures of friends with descriptions and stories

This is just a partial list; the free guide at has much more. Other resources at include college safety related information, products, tips, guides and the new eBook, The College Safety Guide. The people at are dedicated to providing the latest information, products and news to help students have a safe and secure time on and off campus. is a division of , where your safety is their main concern.

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Rodney Shields
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