College Counseling

Counseling Tips for Success!

Greetings, St. Mary’s Parents/Guardians,

As your students continue to navigate all that a new school year brings, we’d like to offer our help! Here are some suggestions for ways you can lend support to your students.

Ask your students what their goals are for this year – academic, extra-curricular, and otherwise. Allow them to lead this conversation. Work together to understand how you can help support their goals. If goals are abstract or long-term, help students break goals down into concrete, more easily achievable pieces. For example, “I will talk to one new person every other day,” versus, “I want to make lots of friends.”

Understand that this may be a time of transition and that change is difficult for many of us. Patience and encouragement can go a long way.

Set up a productive study environment, free of distraction. Ensure your students are sitting upright at a desk and that homework materials are organized.

Allow your students a break between completed homework assignments. Most students are more motivated by reward than punishment – study breaks can be an incentive and a time to refresh before the next round. Consider activities your students can walk away from easily to reengage with studying, such as a walk around the block, playing with the family pet, listening to a song or two, or perhaps making a snack.

Encourage your students to develop strong working relationships with their teachers. If your students have questions regarding schoolwork, encourage them to approach or email their teachers directly. Likewise, counselors and Learning Center teachers are always available to advise on extra help for any school subject.

Model time management skills thoughtfully. Consider the examples you set in your day-to-day approach to your to-do list.

Spend time together as a family. This can be a comforting and grounding space for students. Balance the conversation out, so that it does not center entirely on school and can also include other important aspects of your students’ lives.

Keep the doors to communication open by listening and asking how you can help.

The counselors are available to assist in any way. We are committed to providing a safe, nurturing, and confidential environment where students can explore issues and find solutions. Likewise, we are available to you, the parents and guardians, to advise you on all topics academic, social, and emotional related to your students. You can determine your student’s counselor by consulting our signatures below to find your student’s TA. Feel free to contact us any time!

Take care,

Amy, Allison, and Anne