Dear Parents and Families,

Fresh off of Fall Break, I’m sure many students are saying, “We made it to December!”  I hope they got a much needed touch from home last week, whether that means leaving campus for Fall Break or an awesome care package to alleviate the need for grocery shopping in Fort Collins, because the next few weeks will be packed with end-of-term preparation for final examinations.

Some conversations over Fall Break lead to concerned phone calls to Parent & Family Programs about helping students “turn it around” academically before the end of the semester.  I hope this isn’t the case for many students, but if it is, there are a few resources that can help.  First, I’d encourage students to be realistic about how much they can improve before the end of the semester.  In talking with a current CSU student about his experience, he reminded me students have had all semester to build their grades up, so a "last minute effort" won't have the desired effect of raising a final letter grade by leaps and bounds.  He suggests students focus on preparing for final examinations over the next few weeks to see if they can make an impact.  This strategy will be most helpful if students are on the cusp of earning a higher grade letter for their final grade.  If students are more than a few points away from earning a higher grade in a class, this strategy might not be as effective.  I encourage students to:

  • Schedule a meeting with their faculty member(s) to discuss their progress this semester, what they still don’t understand, and the feasibility of earning a higher grade.  As one of our favorite faculty members continues to remind us, “I’m the best tutor because I know what will be on the test!”
  • Take advantage of student-formed study groups in their classes and final examination review sessions offered by faculty and teaching assistants.
  • Use the Learning Programs offered through The Institute for Learning and Teaching.
  • Find the best study space on campus (many of which can be found in the Morgan Library) and use it frequently!

If, after talking with your student, it is clear their grade in one or more classes will suffer, there are some things to know in terms of options for moving forward at Colorado State (and be sure to check out the article about end-of-term concerns by Miel McCarthy below):

  • Students with a grade point average (GPA) below a 2.0 will be placed on academic probation.  From this point, students have 2 semesters to raise their GPA back up to a 2.0 before they are academically dismissed.
  • Students should immediately talk with their academic advisors about options.  There are many things students can do to jump start academic improvement and academic advisors will be students’ best resource for determining next steps.
  • Using the Repeat/Delete option which allows students to repeat a course one time and have the grade earned the first time the course was taken to be removed from their GPA calculation.  Just be sure your student submitted the proper paperwork to replace the grade!

At the end of the semester, I know students are more grateful than ever for your love and support.  I encourage you to talk with your student about expectations over Winter Break (see an article below from current students) and to look forward to some down time with your student between semesters in just a few short weeks.

Lastly, the Rams are going bowling!  CSU’s football team will find out Sunday night where the team is headed for a bowl game.  When the announcement comes, we’re hopeful families will lend their support to the bowl effort by purchasing discounted student tickets, travel packages that include game tickets, hotel, air fare and pregame events, and other bowl-related items at CSURAMS.com.

Thanks for your ideas, feedback, and wonderful support of your students.  We couldn’t do it without you.

All my best, Kacee
___________________________
Kacee Collard Jarnot
Director of Parent and Family Programs
Office of the Vice President for Student Affairs
Colorado State University
201 Administration Building
Fort Collins, CO 80523
(970) 491-6680

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Career Center Insights: Benefits of Experiential Learning

Interviewing

By: The Career Center Staff

As finals become a very near reality for students across campus and graduation for December graduates nears and May graduates begin to prepare for their final term in college.  Many students, regardless of what year they are in school may overlook the benefits of experiential learning opportunities that abound on CSU campus.  Experiential learning such as an internship is very important to a student’s long-term career success.  Katie Flint, Senior Associate Director of Employer Relations at the CSU Career Center offers, “Employers expect students to have had an internship by the time they are in the job search process – this is just a reality for today’s students. By having an internship or other related work experience, this shows an employer that a student has gained important knowledge and crucial soft-skills that can only be learned outside of the classroom.”

Spring semester offers several opportunities for students to connect with employers.  One key way students can network and submit their resume for internship opportunities is the CSU Spring Career Fair on February 4 & 5 from 11:00 am – 4:00 pm both days.    Flint shares, “The CSU Spring Career Fair is the perfect place for students to find internship and job opportunities! Where else do you have hundreds of employers come together wanting to hire CSU students? This is the only time in their lives where this many employers are seeking them out!”

Although networking opportunities abound in the spring semester it is important to encourage your student to be prepared prior to seeking out such opportunities.   “Students who take the time to prepare by getting their resume reviewed at Resume Rush, attending a career fair prep workshop, and researching employers ahead of time – these are the students that get snagged up by employers—these are the students employers want the most” said Flint.

Flint continued by sharing, “By sitting down one-on-one with a career counselor, students can gain crucial insights as they think through where they are at and where they want to be. Statistics show that students who use their career center’s resources, including career counselors, are more successful in their future job search. The key is to start early and NOT wait until their senior year!”  Career Counseling appointments are just one of the many tools the Career Center offers to CSU students aimed at helping them achieve their job and internship search goals.

Students often wait until their senior year to begin networking.  Although networking during their senior year can still be beneficial beginning the networking process early on in their college experience can help lay the groundwork for long-term success.  “I can’t stress enough how important it is for students to be actively engaged in their career development starting the very first year they’re on campus. What does this mean? It means they attend a career related workshop or they set up an appointment with a career counselor or they stop by the Career Center to see what it’s all about. The Career Center should be a part of a student’s life throughout all the years they are at CSU” Flint commented.

For a full listing of Career Center events please visit the Career Center’s website frequently as events are added periodically throughout the academic year.  For more information on the Spring Career Fair please visit the Career Fair page on the Career Center website.

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Learning from Mistakes

Report Card

By: Miel McCarthy, Retention Coordinator

We are reaching the point of the semester where anxiety can take a firm hold as students anticipate the end of the semester and their final grades. Even for students that have done really well all semester, there can be some nervousness until they have their official grades in hand. And for students that have struggled throughout the semester, it can be a very stressful time waiting for final grades and accepting the difficulties faced throughout the semester.

As a University, we recognize that many students will make mistakes and use poor decision-making while in college that will sometimes have a negative impact on their academic success. Holding students accountable is an important part of the learning process and encourages continued development of autonomy and self-awareness.  Campus staff are often emailing students with helpful reminders about resources on campus and encouraging students to make good decisions around their academics, like, meeting with professors during office hours, attending every class, studying the appropriate amount of time outside class, avoiding overcommitting to activities outside of class, and utilizing tutoring resources. We try to communicate with students that mistakes happen and students can learn, and recover, from their mistakes.

Sometimes a tough semester will help students feel more empowered to take control of their education, ignite stronger passion about their field of study, or allow a student to practice independence asking for help. There is a great deal of opportunity for students to learn more about themselves during challenging semesters and feel a sense of responsibility in directing their future success.

The role a student’s family plays is critical in helping students feel supported while also being responsible for their own decisions. Communicating expectations and encouraging students to be in charge of their own education are helpful ways that families can support the work of campus staff in helping a student be successful.

One important University policy to share with students and families is called “Repeat/Delete”. This policy allows students to repeat a CSU undergraduate class that they might have done poorly in and delete the previous grade. This is a great option for students who are interested in GPA recovery for restricted majors, graduate school, internships or study abroad. For more detailed information about the policy please refer to the CSU Registrar’s website.

We hope your student had a wonderful Fall semester and everything went as planned. However, if this wasn't the case, remind your student of the lessons to be learned and support them in making positive changes for the future.

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Student Perspective: Going Home for Winter Break

Student Interns

By: Kasey Broscheit and Janisa Garcia, Student Interns in the Office of the Vice President for Student Affairs

Breaks can be an exciting time for busy students and their families. College can be a very different experience than living at home and comes with a lot of freedoms and responsibilities that don’t always exist in the home environment.

The expectations family members might have for a student’s break can be different than what the student is expecting. When we are at school, we are figuring out how to balance studying, class, work, extra-curricular activities, and our social lives all at the same time. This involves a lot of time-management and multitasking that can be overwhelming and exhausting. When it is time to go home and see our families, we are looking for relaxation, where we can just breathe, sleep a lot, and have some casual downtime to recover from the stress of school.  As an example, when Janisa went home for her first fall break, her family was confused by how much she wanted to sleep. Her parents wondered why she wanted to go to bed so early at home, since she was used to staying up late while at college. But students use break as a time to wind-down, take a deep breath, and recover from the lack of sleep those late-night study sessions force us into. For Kasey, when she goes home for break, she craves the alone time it offers. She loves her family and loves spending time with them, but since she manages so much at school and work that it is sometimes nice to spend some time by herself and practice more self-care.

Sometimes it can be hard for parents and families to understand that students are using break as a break; a break from our college lives and not just a feet-first jump back to busy family life. There are several ways for families to be supportive of their students. We find it helpful when there isn’t a ton planned for the first day or so, so that we can have time to relax, catch up, and adjust to being back at home.

Not only does school cause a lot of stress, but now that your student has been on their own a little bit, coming back home can be a challenging and surreal experience. Not only have they had to adjust to not living with you, but you have adjusted to not living with them. Students have started to live by different rules than they may have when living at home. It is helpful to have a discussion, especially on students’ first break back home, about the new freedoms that may be associated with living away from home. For example, when Kasey first came home, she assumed curfew was a thing of the past. She had been living in an environment where she was on her own and didn’t have a curfew and felt responsible enough to not have to abide by the curfew enforced in high school. After discussing it, her parents decided she was able to handle that freedom.  Janisa, on the other hand, respected the same rules her parents had set in place when she was younger. The biggest key to successful breaks is communication and allowing a bit of space and time to adjust.

If you have an older student, remember every break comes with the same challenges. As your student grows deeper in their college experience, they may want to come home less, as they figure out more what their post-college life may look like. This is not a reflection on how much they love you. They still love you, but are becoming stronger and more independent adults as they go through each year of school. For Kasey, coming home as a senior can sometimes be challenging simply because it is now unusual for her to live in a house full of people. Being at home can sometimes be overwhelming as students become more independent and think about life on their own. Break can be a great time to reconnect with each other and also rest.  Be sure to communicate with your student for the best outcomes for everyone. We hope you enjoy this time together!

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On-Campus Housing Over Breaks

Residence Hall

By: John Malsam, Assistant Director of Residence Life

At each of the University Break periods (Fall, Winter, Spring), most of our residence halls close.  Please note most halls are closed and locked over Winter Break. Students must remember to take their plane tickets, medicine, ski and snow boarding items, and other important belongings because they will not be allowed back into the room/hall over break.  Halls close on Friday, December 20 at 10:00 p.m., but students are expected to leave within 24 hours after their last final.  If your student has traveling conflicts, he or she must speak with the Residence Director in his or her hall.  The residence halls open for returning students again on Saturday, January 18 at 8:00 a.m.  

Residence Life does offer students the chance to register for break housing, which is accompanied by a $55/night charge.  That $55 covers the daily room charges and provides two meals per day as break periods are not counted in the billing of regular room and board.  For students who live in halls that will be closing, we have temporary spaces available in halls that will be open.  Over Winter Break, Parmelee Hall remains open, as does the Parmelee Dining Center.  When students register for break housing, we ask they provide a few details for why the plan to stay.  Space is limited so we want to be sure to meet the needs of students who are participating in University activities (campus employment, varsity athletics, etc.) or have demonstrated personal needs (international students, financial limitations for travel, etc.).

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Benefits of Living on Campus

GPA for Living on Campus Charts

By: Tonie Miyamoto, Director of Communications and Sustainability 

The campus newspaper has been full of ads the past few weeks enticing students to live in various apartment communities and rental properties around Fort Collins. As we in Housing & Dining Services prepare to offer residence hall students the option to return to the halls next fall, we thought it would be helpful to provide some information and discussion points to help you & your student decide which housing option is the best fit.

We often hear rumors that we have no space in the halls for returning students or that no returning students live on campus. Here are some myth-busters that may help clarify campus housing options for returning students.

  • Myth: the halls are only for first year students.
    Fact: with recent renovations and the brand new Laurel Village coming online in Fall 2014, we have more than 1,200 spaces to offer to returning and transfer students. Returning students get first choice of premium spaces including singles, doubles-as-single, and new and recently renovated halls.
  • Myth: no returning/upperclass students live in the halls.
    Fact: over 20% of the students in the halls are returning, transfer, and upperclass students and we’d like to see that number grow. We have designated communities and wings set aside for returning and transfer students so they can live with other upperclass students.
  • Myth: dining plans don’t offer returning students enough flexibility.
    Fact: the U Plan, offered only to returning and transfer students, offers maximum flexibility with just 5 meals per week, 20 bonus meals, and $150 RamCash. New and recently renovated student kitchens in the halls provide space for students to cook when they want to and the dining centers offer balanced meals for students when they need them.

Data from the 2012 National Survey of Student Engagement (NSSE) highlights some important academic benefits to living on campus:

  • Students who live on campus have a higher GPA than students who live off campus
  • Students who live on campus are more likely to be retained by Colorado State
  • On campus residents report a higher level of campus support than students who live off campus
  • On campus residents report a higher quality of relationships with faculty members and other students than students who live off campus

We know that some of the off campus apartments offer very appealing incentives like hot tubs, tanning beds, and flat screen TVs when students sign a lease. While on campus housing has a different focus (think higher GPAs), we do have some great incentives for students who choose to live on campus next fall:

  • 2013-2014 room and board rates are frozen for returning students for 2014-2015 by building
  • $0 due at signing (deposit from this year will roll over to next fall)
  • Room and board includes all utilities, high speed internet, and cable and is billed directly to CSU student accounts where it will be covered by financial aid, if applicable
  • All applications submitted by March 31 will be eligible for a drawing that includes:
    • 1 grand prize of free Room & Board for the 2014-2015 academic year
    • 5 prizes of $500 (choice of credit to CSU Bookstore, discount on Room & Board, or iPad Air)
  • Location, location, location – on campus living is the only option that puts students in the heart of campus with easy access to our award-winning Rec Center, library, classrooms, and athletic and cultural events
  • Student support – living in the residence halls provides a built-in support network that ranges from peer mentors to live-in staff to safety officers and SafeWalk, as well as academic and social resources

Important dates for fall 2014 room selection:

  • February 3-4: Students who are eligible to return to their current room may select it
  • February 6-7: Groups of 3 or more students who wish to be roommates/suitemates can select adjacent rooms/suites; participants in Housing & Dining Services student leadership can select their choice of rooms (RHA, Hall Council, DSAC, Eco Leaders)
  • February 11-13: Displaced students (students who are unable to retain current room/hall due to Residential Learning Community or other programmatic requirements) may select their room
  • February 17-March 31: Open selection; all students may select any available space
  • April 1: Room Selection closed; current students who still wish to apply for housing must complete a New Student Housing Application

We hope this information is useful as you and your student discuss living options for next year. If you have any questions about campus living options, please visit our website, email us at assign@colostate.edu, or call (970) 491-4719.

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Meet the Staff: Housing and Dining Services

Residence Life

By: Steph Parrish, Assistant Residence Director and Emily Pagano, GUIDE Coordinator

Colorado State University Housing and Dining Services is proud to provide our students with accommodations and experiences that support their academic, personal, and co-curricular success. As some of your students complete their first semester of college and others may look ahead to graduation, the start of the Spring semester is the perfect time to get involved in the residence halls. A brief list of both paid and unpaid leadership opportunities is below. Please refer to the Housing and Dining website for more information.

  • Dining Services Advisory Council:  A paid opportunity to work with Dining Center managers to solicit student feedback, work large-scale events, and represent the needs of students’ in your residence hall to staff.
  • GUIDE (Gaining Understanding through Involvement, Diversity, and Education):  A paid opportunity to work on a team of students who plan fun and educational programs for residence hall students.
  • Hall Council:  Each residence hall has a council of students interested in facilitating resident participation in the halls through activity-planning, leadership development, and making decisions that will impact the community.
  • Leadership Development Community:  An on-campus living community in Durward Hall in which students interested in service and leadership come together to explore opportunities in community service and experiential learning.​
  • Live Green Team:  If your student is passionate about the environment, this is an opportunity for them to get involved in CSU’s commitment to sustainability. They’ll join a team of students and staff who plan events like RecycleMania, Green Warriors, and an energy use competition.
  • National Residence Hall Honorary (NRHH):  A national honor society that recognizes the top 1% of student leaders in the residence halls and plans recognition, service, and leadership events on campus. The society accepts nominations and applications each semester for students wishing to be inducted.
  • Residence Halls Association (RHA):  Students are elected to represent their hall to RHA  the student-run governing body of the residence halls. RHA offers leadership opportunities on committees that plan events, attending conferences and retreats, and making important decisions that impact students in the residence halls.
  • Resident Assistants:  ​RAs live and work on a residential floor in one of the halls to create a safe, inclusive, and vibrant living community for our students. They serve as mentors to residents on their floor, are members of a staff team, and are compensated with room and board for the academic year.​
  • Employment:  Other employment opportunities include desk assistants, working in the dining halls or express locations, and summer conferences positions.

Research indicates student involvement in co-curricular experiences plays a significant role in supporting both academic success and an overall meaningful college experience (Astin, 1993).  As your student gears up for next semester, help them consider opportunities to share their passion and skills with our campus community.

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Get Your Student's 1098-T Tax Form Faster, Easier, and Greener!

Electronic 1098-T

By: Debbie Owens, A/R Systems Accountant

It’s almost tax time!  Colorado State University is required to annually provide eligible students with an IRS Form 1098-T.  The information on this form is used to determine eligibility for federal income tax education credits.  For more information, visit the IRS website and view IRS Publication 970 or consult your tax specialist.  If you have questions about your Form 1098-T, please email 1098t@colostate.edu.

Colorado State University is requesting your student’s consent to receive the 1098-T tax form electronically.  If you would like your student to access their 1098-T form electronically please ask your student to log into RAMweb, click on Tax Information, and follow the instructions.  Be sure that your student is signed up by January 1 to ensure electronic delivery of the 2013 Form 1098-T.

BENEFITS TO RECEIVING THE FORM 1098-T ELECTRONICALLY 

ONLINE DELIVERY:

  • will be available earlier for students who selected to receive their information electronically
  • is more secure
  • eliminates the chance of the form getting lost, misdirected, or misplaced
  • allows you to access current and past years’ 1098-T tax information
  • is friendlier to the environment and supports CSU as a green University

GET YOUR STUDENT’S 1098-T FORM ON FAMWEB:

Your student can now grant you access to view or print their 1098-T Form online through FAMweb.

Students can grant access through RAMweb by selecting Manage Access to My Records (FAMweb).  If there is already access for billing information, grades, schedules, etc., check the Tax Information box.

Parents or trusted individuals can then log in through FAMweb to access the following tax information:

  • 1098-T tax reporting form (current and prior years)
  • 1098-T detailed information
  • information regarding education tax credits
  • 1098-T FAQs

Questions about the 1098-T Form? Contact Debbie Owens at 1098t@colostate.edu

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Alcohol and Other Drug Resources

CSU Health Network Logo

By: Andrea Coryell, Assistant Director for Alcohol and Other Drug Prevention, CSU Health Network Health Education & Prevention Services

Winter break can provide an opportunity to revisit discussions about alcohol and other drug use.  Many CSU students choose to abstain or drink responsibly.  A smaller number (often first and second year students) exhibit some risky behaviors with alcohol and drug use or may even be struggling with abuse or addiction issues.  CSU takes seriously the risks associated with underage drinking and illegal drug use.  Our programs are designed to create a healthy culture, reduce risky behavior, and provide the support students need to be successful at CSU and beyond.  Services can be classified into three categories:

  • Prevention – The CSU Health Network’s Health Education and Prevention Services, in collaboration with on and off campus partners, coordinates a comprehensive campus alcohol and other drug prevention program, using evidence-based practices.  Several programs are specifically designed for freshman students. For example, all incoming students are required to complete a state-of-the-art, web-based prevention program called AlcoholEdu.
  • Early Intervention – These programs are designed for the student experiencing mild to moderate negative impacts of alcohol and other drug use.  Students learn skills necessary to cope with the pressures of college and make healthier choices.  These services can be arranged through the CSU Health Network’s Counseling Services.
  • Treatment – Unfortunately, some students experience significant problems with alcohol/other drug abuse or addiction.  For those students, getting the proper level of treatment, at the appropriate time, is critical for academic and life success.  To meet this need, the CSU Health Network’s Counseling Services’ DAY Program (Drugs, Alcohol and You) is a national leader in on-campus, out-patient treatment for students experiencing substance abuse and dual-diagnosis problems.

How families can help?

Research shows that a parent or family member can have a powerful impact on a student’s alcohol and/or drug use.  Despite how it may seem at times, your student cares about your opinion and will continue to seek your guidance, even away from home.  Here are some basic tips to help:

  • Talk:  Continue having open conversations about the pressures they may experience, the choices they will have to make, and the potential consequences.  Your student will need your support and guidance to make the right choices.  Your expectations and opinions still matter!
  • Stay Involved:  As a parent or family member, you can stay involved; inquire about campus alcohol policies, call your student and ask about their roommates and living arrangements.  Pay attention to your students’ experiences and activities.
  • Get the Facts:  Students often overestimate the amount their peers are drinking and may try to drink more to fit in. To support your student in their choices, having accurate information is imperative.
  • Know the Warning Signs: Be aware of the signs of possible alcohol and/or other drug abuse (e.g., lower grades, never available or reluctant to talk, unwilling to discuss activities with friends, trouble with campus authorities, serious mood changes). Help your student feel comfortable getting help for themselves or a friend.  Your student can connect with a caring professional by:
    • Visiting CSU Health Network Counseling Services in 123 NW Aylesworth Hall with walk-in hours: M-F 7:30am to 4:30pm; Tuesdays 7:30am to 7:30pm
    • Calling CSU Health Network Counseling Services:  970-491-6053
    • Know as a parent or family member, you can call Student Case Management at 970-491-8051 for help with locating resources and referrals for your student.

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Staying Safe on Campus

WGAC Logo

By: Dell Rae Ciaravola, Senior Public Relations Coordinator, CSU Police Department Public Information Office

In recent months, Colorado State University has experienced an attempted sexual assault and a sexual assault on the east side of campus, and another assault near the east side of campus.

In response, the university and CSU police completed safety assessments of the areas and took quick action. We’ve added lighting and trimmed (and in a few cases removed) more than 150 trees and shrubs. This provides a better line of sight into and through the areas. Our police also are devoting full attention to investigating these assaults.

We did learn this week that results from evidence gathered in all three assaults indicate that the two incidents that occurred on the CSU campus on Sept 13 and Oct 24 at the Jack Christiansen track are not related to the incident reported to Fort Collins Police Services on November 9. (More information about these incidents is available here).

We wanted to remind you to talk to your student about not walking alone. CSUPD recommends that anyone walking or driving through campus at night should take necessary steps for their safety. Remind your student to use Safewalk or walk in groups. Tell your student to lock their doors when driving and not to stop for strangers.

Although there has been a heightened awareness involving recent reported stranger assaults, we know that 97 percent of sexual assaults reported to CSU resources and authorities are committed by someone that the survivor knows. As a family member it's really important to talk with your student about the importance of always asking for consent.  It also is important that ALL survivors, regardless of who is responsible for their assault, feel supported and believed.

The Women and Gender Advocacy Center has created a new curriculum aimed at raising awareness about strategies for personal protection and empowerment. The first workshop will be held from 6-9 p.m. on Monday Dec. 9th in the Durrell Center and is FREE for students. You can always check out the WGAC webpage for resources and updates on programs being offered.

CSU sexual assault resources

  • Sexual Assault Victim Assistance Team - provides confidential support and advocacy to CSU students who have been sexually assaulted. The team is made up of volunteers from across campus, showcasing different backgrounds, who assist victims of all genders, and any family or friends with the physical, psychological and legal aftermath of sexual assault. To reach the CSU Victims Assistance Team 24/7 call 970-492-4242.
  • Women and Gender Advocacy Center - provides programs and resources focusing on all genders, social justice, and interpersonal violence prevention. Call 970-491-6384 during business hours M-F.
  • CSU Health Network Counseling Services - CSU students may access the CSU Health Network for counseling support. Student may visit the counseling center at 123 Aylesworth NW or call us at (970) 491-6053.

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Preparing for Finals and Test Anxiety

Test

By: Janelle Patrias, Coordinator of Mental Health Initiatives, CSU Health Network

You can almost feel it in the air. No, not winter or the upcoming holidays – Finals Week!

Students who have been attending class, taking good notes, keeping up with the required readings and studiously studying may still struggle when final exams come around. Not because they don’t know the material, but rather because they are challenged by test anxiety.

Sometimes it is hard to know if your student is experiencing general nervousness or test anxiety. One of the best ways to tell the difference is to help your student determine how well he or she really prepared for the exam and knew the content (without judgment). If your student was convinced he or she was well prepared for the exam and still did poorly, perhaps it is an issue of test anxiety.  Another tell-tale sign is if after the exam your student can easily recall the answers that were escaping him or her during the exam.

Test anxiety occurs when feelings of anxiety interfere with one’s ability to recall previously learned information during a testing situation. In other words, you "forget" or "blank out" what you've previously learned and thus do poorly on a test.

Consider sharing these tips with your student:

  • Relax and breathe – Focus on your breath to calm yourself down. Take deep breaths while the test is being passed out or anytime you feel stuck on a difficult question.
  • Stop studying at least 30 minutes before the test – Taking a break right before the test to recharge your batteries will benefit you more than those final few minutes of cramming.
  • Think positively – Adopt a positive mindset that dwells on your successes. Negative thoughts will only increase your level of anxiety.
  • Don’t talk about the test – Avoid talking about the test immediately before or right after the exam.
  • Focus on the task at hand – No matter what else is going on in your life, your only job while taking the test is to focus on taking the test. Use your breath to pull you back into the present moment to focus.
  • Get plenty of sleep – All-nighters really aren’t as helpful as you think. Really!
  • Develop supportive, healthy routines – Consistency may provide you with a sense of comfort when preparing to take the test.  Sit in your usual seat.  Always eat and power up with the same healthy snack beforehand.
  • Remember your test grade does not determine your self-worth – The test is an only a measure of your knowledge on a subject at a given point in time. If you are struggling with test anxiety, recalling information can be difficult. It is important to remember that this snapshot in time does not define who you are as a person.

Lastly, if test anxiety has been a struggle all semester and your student has tried a number of these tips already, consider encouraging them to seek test taking accommodation through Resources for Disabled Students and Learning Assistance Consultation through the CSU Health Network Counseling Services.

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New CSU Health Insurance Requirement

Student Health Insurance

By: Christina Berg, Director of Health Education and Prevention Services, CSU Health Network

Colorado State University is implementing an all-student health insurance requirement beginning with the Spring 2014 semester. This requirement is new for domestic undergraduate students and will only affect those students taking 6 or more resident instruction credits. Information about the requirement is provided during Registration Ready for your student.

Ascension, a CSU contracted vendor, will be managing the insurance waiver process for domestic students. Students will receive an email from Ascension 1-2 weeks after registering for classes. They should click on the link provided in the email to go to a secure portal where they complete the waiver process. It is important to respond promptly with the health insurance information required to avoid being automatically enrolled in the CSU Student Health Insurance plan (CSU SHIP).  The Student Insurance Office will be accepting waivers from international students.

The health insurance waiver deadline for Spring 2014 is February 5, 2014.

Students receiving financial aid may qualify for additional financial aid to help purchase the CSU SHIP.

For detailed information about this requirement, implementation and the CSU SHIP, log on to the health insurance website.

INSURANCE MARKETPLACES

The implementation of the new CSU health insurance requirement coincides with the implementation of the Affordable Care Act (ACA). The requirement for all persons to carry health insurance begins January 1, 2014.

Insurance marketplaces allow for comparative shopping for insurance plans and feature live chat to answer your questions in real time.  The marketplace in Colorado is called Connect for Health Colorado.

The Larimer County Health District is responsible for educating persons in Larimer County about the ACA and how to use Connect for Health. Insurance guides will work with students, as well as other Larimer County residents, to answer questions and help them navigate Connect for Health Colorado. They will have information regarding the CSU SHIP and help students compare plan costs and benefits.  To use this service, contact Larimer Health Connect - (970) 472-0444.

Persons may qualify for subsidies to help them purchase insurance through Connect for Health Colorado.

Proof of minimum insurance required must be turned in with your tax return.

RAMCARE SUPPLEMENT PROGRAM – SPRING SEMESTER ENROLLMENT

Why RamCare?

  • Do you want the convenience of on-campus healthcare without the hassle of coordinating with your private health insurance?
  • Does your health plan have great catastrophic coverage but falls short when it comes to minor illness and injuries?
  • Do you have a high deductible when you are out of network?

If so, the RamCare Supplement Program may be for you!

Specifically designed for students with private health insurance, RamCare covers $1,500 at the CSU Health Network for services such as lab, radiology, physical therapy, allergy and counseling that would otherwise be payable at the time of service. It also provides $100 per semester toward prescription costs, and $50 Flex Dollars to be used toward optometry, dental, immunization, specialty counseling, and massage therapy services in the CSU Health Network.

RamCare will ensure that healthcare at the CSU Health Network is provided to each student with no additional charges per visit, eliminating the need for coordination with private health insurance plans.

The cost of RamCare is $150 per semester for the Fall and Spring, and $100 for the Summer. Students taking fewer than six credits who purchase this supplement will also be assessed the student health fee upon enrollment. This is not health insurance and is for use only at the CSU Health Network.

Log onto the supplemental health insurance website to learn more about the program and access the enrollment form.

The RamCare enrollment deadline for Spring 2014 is February 5, 2014.

Questions?  Contact CSU Health Network Insurance Office at (970) 491-2457 or CSUHN_Insurance@mail.colostate.edu.

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In This Issue

Quick Links

CSU Acronyms

 

ITEMS OF INTEREST

​​​​Let us know if you've had a good experience with our RAMFAM Association Business Directory Partners or you'd like to recommend a new business!

 

College Parents of America

 

Registrar's Office Quarterly Newsletter

 

If you are confused about accessing FAMweb on our new website, on the left side column, there is a "FAMweb tab" that when clicked brings you to the FAMweb information page. The "FAMweb Login" link to the right of the "Welcome" banner will bring you to the log in page.

 

Based on your feedback, we have created 3 new Facebook groups for parents and families so they may support and connect with one another.  Check them out and join!

 

Major: Ethnic Studies

 

Student Involvement: Spanish Club

POLL RESULTS

Last month, we asked how you help your student make difficult decisions.  Most of you--52%--said you help your student explore options and weigh the pros and cons, while an additional 36% of respondents said they give suggestions, but allow their student to make decisions without too much influence.  Parenting and being a supportive family member to a college student can certainly be difficult, yet allowing them the chance to come to their own conclusions, with your support, is often extremely beneficial.  We hope our newsletter and other programs and services help make this job a little easier!  Thanks for your feedback!

What's Happening at CSU

Below is a list of the diverse involvement opportunities available at Colorado State University this month. When your student says "there's nothing to do here," you'll be ready to suggest some really interesting and fun events! To visit the entire calendar, or events by topic, visit the University Events Calendar. For additional parent and family dates, you'll find the most up-to-date information on our Parent and Family website.

 

December 3, 2013

Private Lands Collaboration: Models of Conservation, 12:30 PM @ LSC 220-222

 

There's An APP For That! Using Online Tools To Help Promote Your Organization, 2:00 PM @ Morgan Library 171

 

Final Frenzy, 5:00 PM @ TILT

 

Menorah Lighting & Chanukah Celebration, 5:00 PM @ Outside LSC Near the Transit Center

 

Men’s Basketball vs. Colorado, 7:00 PM @ Moby Arena

 

December 4, 2013

FRS Seminar - Jozef Sibik, Visiting Scientist, 12:00 PM @ Forestry 127

 

Think Fast: Improvisation in Leadership, 4:00 PM @ Morgan Library 171

 

Annual Holiday Gala Concert, 7:30 PM @ Lincoln Center for the Performing Arts

 

December 5, 2013

Global Careers: A Panel Discussion with International Studies Professionals, 4:00 PM @ Clark A202

 

School of Global Environmental Sustainability Distinguished Author Series Reception featuring Philip Cafaro and his Book "Life on the Brink", 4:00 Pm @ Johnson Hall

 

Piano Studio Recital, 5:00 PM @ Organ Recital Hall

 

Final Frenzy, 6:00 PM @ TILT

 

Nick Petry Workshop Preview, 6:00 PM @ Cark A101

 

Parade of Lights Preview, 6:00 PM @ University Center for the Arts

 

World AIDS Day 2013 Candlelight Vigil, 6:00 PM @ Durrell Center

 

Women’s Basketball vs. Loyola Marymount, 7:00 PM @ Moby Arena

 

Holiday Special! Little Women by Louisa May Alcott, 7:30 PM @ University Theatre

 

Violin Studio Recital, 7:30 PM @ Organ Recital Hall

 

Wind Ensemble Concert, 7:30 PM @ University Center for the Arts

 

December 6, 2013

Century of Trends: Historical Perspectives on the Evolution of Water Quality in the US, 11:00 AM @ Natural and Environmental Sciences Building (NESB) A302-304

 

Health and Exercise Science Fall Research Seminars, 3:00 PM @ Moby Arena

 

 Sampling Methodology Tradeoffs: Evaluating Monitoring Strategies for the Endangered Humpback Chub, 3:00 PM @ Wagar 133

 

Violin Studio Recital, 5:00 PM @ Organ Recital Hall

 

First Friday Extended Hours, 6:00 PM @ University Art Museum

 

Masquerade Fashion Show, 6:00 PM @ LSC Theatre

 

FAC Middle Eastern Night, 6:00 PM @ International House

 

Holiday Special! Little Women by Louisa May Alcott, 7:30 PM @ University Theatre

 

Fall Dance Major Capstone Concert, 8:00 PM @ UCA Dance Theatre

 

Masquerade Fashion Show, 8:30 PM @ LSC Theatre

 

December 7, 2013

Fall Dance Major Capstone Concert, 2:00 PM @ UCA Dance Theatre

 

Ugly Sweater Ice Skating Fundraiser, 4:00 PM @ EPIC Ice Arena

 

Holiday Special! Little Women by Louisa May Alcott, 7:30 PM @ University Theatre

 

Fall Dance Major Capstone Concert, 8:00 PM @ UCA Dance Theatre

 

Masquerade Fashion Show, 8:30 PM @ LSC Theatre

 

December 8, 2013

Men’s Basketball vs. Southwestern Oklahoma State, 12:00 PM @ Moby Arena

 

Holiday Special! Little Women by Louisa May Alcott, 2:00 PM @ University Theatre

 

Concert Orchestra Concert: La Dolce Musica, 7:30 PM @ Organ Recital Hall

 

December 9, 2013

MANRRS Winter Wear Drive, 8:00 AM @ Warner College of Natural Resources

 

Test Taking Strategies: Final Examination Preparation, 4:00 PM @ TILT

 

Virtuoso Series Concert: NEW CSU Faculty Christopher Van Hof, Trombone, 7:30 PM @ Organ Recital Hall

 

December 10, 2013

Test Taking Strategies: Final Examination, 6:00 PM @ TILT

 

December 11, 2013

BSPM Weekly Seminar—Dr. Nancy Karraker, 12:00 PM @ Plant Sciences E008

 

Collaborative Piano Recital, 5:00 PM @ Organ Recital Hall

 

Men's Basketball vs. Denver - Ugly Sweater Party! And Best Teacher's Award Recognition, 7:00 PM @ Moby Arena

 

December 12, 2013

Food Science and Human Nutrition Graduate Seminar, 4:00 PM @ Gifford 235

 

Woodwinds Area Recital, 5:00 PM @ Organ Recital Hall

 

Test Taking Strategies, 6:00 PM @ TILT

 

Creative Writing Reading Series: MFA Readings, 7:30 PM @ University Art Museum

 

Holiday Special! Little Women by Louisa May Alcott, 7:30 PM @ University Theatre

 

Symphonic Band Concert, 7:30 PM @ UCA

 

December 13, 2013

Last Day of Classes

 

University Withdrawal Deadline

 

Health and Exercise Science Fall Research Seminars, 3:00 PM @ Moby Arena

 

FAC Holiday Desserts, 6:00 PM @ International House

 

FreeOpera Scenes Workshop, 7:30 PM @ UCA

 

Holiday Special! Little Women by Louisa May Alcott, 7:30 PM @ University Theatre

 

December 14, 2013

Women’s Basketball vs. South Dakota Mines, 1:00 PM @ Moby Arena

 

Holiday Special! Little Women by Louisa May Alcott, 7:30 PM @ University Theatre

 

December 15, 2013

Holiday Special! Little Women by Louisa May Alcott, 2:00 PM @ University Theatre

 

December 16-20, 2013

Final Examinations

 

December 20, 2013

FAC Soup Night, 6:00 PM @ International House

 

December 20-21, 2013

Commencement

 

December 21, 2013

Winter Break Begins

 

December 22, 2013

Women’s Basketball vs. Weber State, 2:00 PM @ Moby Arena

 

December 23, 2013

Grades Due

 

Men’s Basketball vs. UIC, TBA @ Moby Arena

 

December 25-27, 2013

Holiday—University Offices Closed and No Classes

 

December 27, 2013

FAC Soup Night, 6:00 PM @ International House

 

December 28, 2013

Men’s Basketball vs. Lamar, 2:00 PM @ Moby Arena

 

Events in California in January 2014

Orange County 3rd Annual Wine Tasting

Agua Dulce Winery Tour and Tasting

 

 

Connecting With Us On Social Media

As many of you know, Parent & Family Programs is on Facebook! If you like our page using the image below, you will be kept up to date with happenings around campus, and important information regarding campus emergencies. You can also connect with other parents and families in this group! Thanks for partnering with us to help your student succeed at CSU!

Facebook Parents Group

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