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    10 Questions Parents Ask

    What parents want to know about preparing a child for college.

    Judy Moseman

    I'm Concerned About Her Grades

    I'm concerned that my daughter's grades aren't going to be high enough to get her into a good college. How big a role do grades play in the admissions process?

    questions parents askGrades are important, and most colleges use grades to initially determine an applicant's quality and desirability. Colleges may then look at the grades in combination with test scores (like the ACT and SAT) and leadership activities. The process actually varies from school to school; some colleges are more selective than others, depending on its entrance standards.

    In any case, the schools to which your daughter applies need to be convinced that she can be successful there. Even if she was the president of every club or team in her high school, her ability to do academic work will be an important factor in determining if she is college material. So encourage her to continue to apply herself to her studies.

    College academics are demanding. Any discipline for studying that she develops now will help her immeasurably when she reaches college—wherever she is admitted.

    I'm Disappointed in His Choice

    I was pretty excited when my son applied to my alma mater. I would've loved to see him follow in my footsteps. Unfortunately, he chose another university, which has disappointed me more than I expected. How can I get over the letdown and show my son support?

    As disappointed as you are, you do have to "get over it," and shift gears to fully support your son in his choice. Talk with him and share your perspective. Tell him your plan to let it go, and to stand behind him in his decision. You want him to be free to make the most of his college experience wherever he is, not to feel weighed down by your disappointment. Be sure to communicate clearly to your son that, even though you're disappointed he didn't choose your alma mater, he is not a disappointment to you.

    Then as he goes off to his new college, participate fully in the welcoming activities available for parents. Watch for attitudes and behaviors in your son that are evidence of his maturing and making good choices. Affirm him for those with all the enthusiasm and pride that you will genuinely feel!

    Is It Worth the Cost?

    My son is determined to attend a Christian university, but I can't believe how expensive they are! Is it really worth it?

    Have you bought a new car lately? Then you know the difference between the "sticker price" and the price you actually ended up paying for your vehicle.

    Stay in conversation with that Christ-ian university your son is considering until you get all the financial aid information and find out what it will really cost for him to attend. There are any number of scholarships and awards that may help to significantly "discount" the cost of his education.

    You ask if the cost is really worth it. Absolutely! Especially when you consider what an investment Christian higher

    education can be. To study with other Christians, under Christian professors, in the context of faith, and in the framework of a Christian worldview, is great preparation for your son's future as a follower of Jesus Christ. (See "Why It Was Worth It" on page 48.)

    My Son Won't Get Moving

    My son hasn't shown much interest in searching for a college. I've tried to encourage him to begin the process while at the same time trying not to nag him. How much should I push him?

    I vote for "encouragement" over the "nag" or "push" responses. For some reason the possibility of college hasn't yet captured your son's imagination. It might be good for him to talk with some college students he respects about their experience at college. Their enthusiasm might be catching. It also could be helpful for your son to participate in life on campus through a campus visit. He'd be able to stay overnight in a residence hall, attend classes, meet with an athletic team, or pursue his areas of interest.


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