More Resources: Parents

Why college?

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 The best gifts parents can give to their child are Roots and Wings.
–Chinese Proverb

As parents and family members, it is our responsibility to give our children a solid foundation from which they can grow and become happy and successful adults.  Supporting and encouraging our children throughout their academic careers, while an enormous privilege, can be challenging as well.  To help parents and family members, resources are provided in this section of the website to:

  • create and strengthen a college-going culture in your home,
  • help you support what is going on in your child’s classroom and school, and
  • support continuing your own education, if you wish to do so.

The advantages of continuing one’s education beyond high school have long been researched and established. Some of those advantages include:


  • Exposure to exciting new ideas and areas of study
  • Increased skills in reading, writing, math, and analysis
  • Opportunities to work alongside professors doing cutting-edge research
  • Ability to increase your knowledge of the world, your own and different cultures, and career options


  • Increase in maturity and independence due to students’ having complete responsibility for their academic career
  • Learning to be tolerant of differences due to being exposed to a vast array of cultures, philosophies, and ways of life
  • Experiencing a wide variety of student activities including the opportunity to tutor, mentor, and study in another country
  • Developing skills for successfully transitioning to adulthood and the world of work


  • Exposure to career and life experiences through internships and fellowships
  • Increase in earning capacity – A four-year college graduate earns almost $1 million dollars more over his or her lifetime than a high school graduate. The average annual income of a four-year college graduate is about $52,180, compared to the average annual income of $30,940 for a high school graduate.
  • Better working conditions, including longer job tenure, more on-the job training opportunities, and more responsibility and promotion opportunities

It is not enough though, to know and understand the advantages of higher education.  As parents and family members, we must do our best to equip our children with the tools and resources they need to be successful both in school and in life.


You are the bows from which your children as living arrows are sent forth.
-Khalil Gibran

We can be the bows for our children if we do the following:

Nurture Your Child’s Inner Spirit

  • Know and appreciate your child as an individual
  • Listen to your child’s innermost thoughts and feelings and let him/her know that you value those insights
  • Support your child’s interests and dreams

Provide Guidance

  • Values and character traits are not instilled overnight; they are formed over time through modeling and repetition
  • Children will do what you do, not always what you say. Make sure you model the behavior you want and not just tell him/her about it
  • Emphasize compassion and tolerance
  • Work to have order and harmony in your home and have fun in the process

Communicate Effectively

  • Make the time to talk to your child every day
  • Engage in your child’s life
  • Ask your child questions about his/her dreams, goals and interests
  • Ask your child for his/her opinion
  • Practice active listening. Make sure to repeat what your child has said to check and make sure you understand what they are trying to convey
  • As your child gets older, talk to him/her about your hopes, dreams and fears for their future and encourage them to talk about their own feelings
  • Establish a strong foundation for open communication with your child now so when they go off to college, you will continue to be an important part of their life

Form a Strong Connection

  • Maintain a close, trusting relationship with your child
  • Hug your child and tell them you love them every day!
  • Make time to do things together
  • Have dinner together
  • Having a close relationship with your child now will help you maintain it when they go off to college and become adults

Empower Your Child

  • Appreciate your child’s need to be an individual
  • Validate your child’s feelings
  • Motivate your child to do his/her best
  • Allow your child to have his/her own experiences
  • Help your child believe in his/her ability to make good decisions
  • As they get older and as appropriate, allow your child to start to make their own decisions so that when they go off to college and, you are not with them every day, they will continue to make good choices



College Readiness Calendar for 9th & 10th graders

The University of California; 2008

Step-by-step college-readiness calendar for parents of 9th and 10th grade students. calendar_9-10m.pdf (654.54KB)

College Readiness Calendar for 11th & 12th graders

The University of California; 2008

A step-by-step college-readiness calendar for parents of 11th and 12th grade students. calendar_11-12m.pdf (211.43KB)

The Four Keys to College

The University of California; 2008

A comprehensive college-readiness parent guide. four_keysm.pdf (452.73KB)

Paying and Saving for College!

The University of California; 2008

A comprehensive resource to show parents have to pay and save for college. pay-savedm.pdf (416.9KB)

Helping Your Child With Transitions

SelfGrowth.Com; 1996-2009

Suggestions on how to help your child make a successful transition.

Education Pays

College Board, 2006

The benefits of higher education for individuals and society.

CaliforniaColleges Resources for Parents; 2006

Resources for parents that emphasize the importance of higher education.

HSF Programs for Parents

Hispanic Scholarship Fund; 2008

The Hispanic Scholarship Fund website for parents.


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Last modified on 9/10/2009

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