They want to help, but just don't know how. Parents want to see their children succeed in life, but when college begins it can be difficult to know where the boundary lines should be and why. Last week we talked a bit about helicopter parents. Not all parents will be helicopter parents, but most could use a little help knowing how to be the parent of a college student. Here are a few resources you might want to recommend to those parents adjusting to this new phase of life:
- Artificial Maturity, Tim Elmore, Jossey-Bass, 2012. A top recommendation, because Elmore unpacks the problems that this generation of students faces and offers helps on how to address them. This is not just a book that describes the Millennial generation but provides real answers on how to relate and solve issues as they arise.
- You're On Your Own (But I'm Here If You Need Me): Mentoring Your Child During the College Years, Marjorie Savage, Touchstone, 2009. As a long time staff member and now parent liaison at the University of Minnesota, Savage has much experience with the student/parent dynamic of the college years. This book is a well-written resource of practical helps for parents, from managing finances to academic pitfalls. Keep in mind that it is not a Christian resource, and you may not agree with every perspective that is offered. You will want to supplement this information with some spiritual resources that will help you mentor your student in their walk of faith.
- King of the Campus, Stephen Lutz, Stephen Lutz & The House Studio, 2013. Though written for college students, parents of college students would benefit from reading King of the Campus before their students begin college. Or better yet, parents and students might read it together and discuss some of the ideas presented in the book during those summer months before college, or during that first year if they are commuting. Lutz challenges students to not only "hold onto their faith" in college, but to make the most of every opportunity to grow and share their faith while in school.
- Sticky Faith, Everyday Ideas to Build Lasting Faith in Your Kids, Dr. Kara E. Powell & Dr. Chap Clark. Sticky Faith now offers a host of resources that can be useful in the church and in the home. This book is a great help for families that want to lead their children to continue to walk in their faith as they become adults. Some of the ideas will work best with younger kids, but many will still be relevant for college students. And, it's a great idea for families with younger kids to start planning for this phase right now. Find all of the Sticky Faith resources at http://stickyfaith.org/family.