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August2011 Volume 6 | Issue 1

Welcome from President Frank

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President Frank
Dear Colorado State Parents & Families; 

On behalf all our CSU faculty, staff, students, and alumni, I’m pleased to welcome you to the 2011-12 academic year!

For parents and families, as well as students, this is a time of transition and conflicting emotions.  I know from experience that even while you share your student’s excitement, nothing can quite prepare you for the moment when all the boxes and duffle bags are unloaded and you drive away from the residence hall with an empty car.

A strong partnership among students, families, and the University can be essential to ensuring a successful college experience—and creating a solid transition for first-year students and their families is an important step. That’s why we encourage all first-year students and their families to be part of Ram Welcome events at CSU August 18-21. Ram Welcome is designed specifically for our first-year students to help deepen their awareness of the many resources and support services available on campus and the opportunities they have to get involved in ways that will expand and enrich their college experience.  (If your student is returning to campus, see the article on events open to all CSU students in the body of the newsletter.)

It’s also an opportunity for you, as parents and family members,  to strengthen your own connection with the University so you can feel confident your student is safe, well-settled, and in good hands at Colorado State.

I encourage you to stay active and connected with CSU life, beginning at Ram Welcome and continuing through the many opportunities we offer throughout the year to get engaged with the CSU community. Your opinions and perspectives are critical to ensuring that CSU remains focused on providing an excellent academic experience and superior service to our students and families.

Again, welcome to Colorado State University--let’s have a great year!

Dr. Tony Frank
President

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Dear Parents & Families:

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Jody Donovan & Kacee Collard Jarnot

Welcome to the 2011-2012 school year at Colorado State University!

We’re so excited for the beginning of the fall semester because we’ve been working hard all summer to prepare for your student’s arrival! Of course, many of us also took a few vacations away from work to rest and rejuvenate.

Please note you are always welcome on the Colorado State University campus.  We believe parents and families play a significant role in students’ success in college. Most students truly value their parents’ and family members’ perspectives and you retain an impressive ability to influence your students’ choices and decisions through active listening and guiding questions. We hope to provide information about transitioning parenting styles from that of “K-12 to college.” This year will be particularly challenging as Jody assumes the new credential as a college parent while Kacee makes sure Jody listens to her own advice!

This monthly e-newsletter is focused on providing you with up-to-date information about happenings on campus, descriptions of helpful resources and services, and tips for successfully supporting your college student to adulthood through the RAMFAM Association. We build each month’s newsletter utilizing the various questions and concerns we receive over the past month as well as offering timely articles anticipating normal developmental challenges students experience throughout the year.

Inside this newsletter you will learn about: 

  • Ram Welcome, for both new and returning students
  • eBilling information
  • FAMweb
  • Homecoming & Family Weekend (September 30-October 2, 2011)
  • CSU Parents Fund

Whether your student is a brand new first year student or a “super senior,” please contact us if you have a question or concern.  We’re here for you!

take care,

Jody & Kacee

Jody Donovan, Ph.D.
Dean of Students/Executive Director of Parent & Family Programs
jody.donovan@colostate.edu

Kacee Collard Jarnot, M.S.
Assistant Director of Parent & Family Programs
kacee.collard@colostate.edu

Parent and Family Programs
Office of the Vice President for Student Affairs
Colorado State University
201 Administration Building
Fort Collins, CO 80523
(970) 491-5312

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Ram Welcome:  Experience CSU!

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Ram Welcome GraphicIt’s hard to believe summer is almost over and Ram Welcome begins this week!  For families of new students, we hope you read our Ram Welcome-specific newsletter, detailing all of the events and logistics for your day and a half on campus.  Please join us in supporting your student and welcoming this new class to CSU!

For families of returning students, please know your student is invited to participate in select Ram Welcome events.  Although they are 'seasoned' college students we want to be sure to welcome them back to campus!  Encourage your students to attend the following events:

Thursday, August 18, 2011

  • CSU Carnival – 7-11 pm on the IM Fields and in the Student Recreation Center

Friday, August 19, 2011

  • Ramapalooza – 7pm – midnight in the Lory Student Center

Saturday, August 20, 2011

  • All of the evening interest programs
    • Hike to the “A” – 5:30-7 pm, leaving from the CSU Transit Center
    • Outdoor Movie – 8:30 pm on the Lory Student Center West Lawn
    • IM Sports Night – 6-9 pm on the IM Fields and in the Student Recreation Center
    • Ram Night @ Super Target – 10 pm – midnight, leaving from the CSU Transit Center

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Community Welcome - Knocking on Doors August 24, 2011

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Community Welcome Group on Remington St.

 

As part of a ten-year tradition called Community Welcome, teams of students, staff and police officers will be visiting close to 2,000 homes near Colorado State University’s campus on Wednesday, August 24, 2011 to personally welcome students back to the area.

The goal of Community Welcome, sponsored by CSU’s Off-Campus Life and the City of Fort Collins Neighborhood Services office, is to foster a sense of community and connection between students and long-term Fort Collins residents. Twenty-five teams, with over 130 volunteers, will spread out and knock on doors in neighborhoods to the north, east and west of campus beginning at 5:00 p.m. to distribute information about city ordinances and encourage neighbors to get out and meet each other.

“Our hope is to share important information regarding Fort Collins and to encourage all neighbors to exchange names and contact information, which can be a great start to having a positive relationship with new neighbors,” said Community Liaison Assistant Director in Off-Campus Life and event coordinator Adrienne Battis.  “People can be creative with what works best for them in communicating with their neighbors be it text messages, phone calls, emails or notes, but it all starts with an initial in-person introduction.”

Teams will also be encouraging students to use Off-Campus Life’s Party Registration program which is heading into its third year. Noise is one of the most common complaints in Fort Collins – a noise citation can have serious consequences including a $1,000 fine per roommate. Party Registration is a warning system that gives students a chance to handle the noise at their parties on their own before police are involved. Teams will also have information regarding events happening in Old Town Fort Collins so that students can get out and enjoy the city community.

Residents and students who are visited during Community Welcome will not be left empty-handed. Each household will receive a colorful deck of cards or a brochure with important tips and facts - a great way to learn more about the Fort Collins community and the expectations CSU has for students.  For those interested in supporting their student’s successful transition to off-campus living, an on-line version of the Community Welcome brochure can be found here: Community Welcome 2011.

In addition to distributing information off-campus, those living on-campus in the residence halls and Apartment Life will also receive information about city ordinances and resources. “The goal of distributing information on campus is to inform students of off-campus expectations before they move into neighborhoods or apartments,” said Jeannie Ortega, director of Off-Campus Life.

For more information, contact community liaison Adrienne Battis at (970) 491-2248.

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Fall 2011 eBilling

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Computer Keyboard

By Trish Torrez, Accounts Receivable Operations Manager

As a green university, CSU sends e-mails to students at their “rams” e-mail address when monthly billing statements are available online on RAMweb.  Students may also request that families be notified via e-mail when monthly billing statements are available online.  Parents and families may view and pay their student’s University student account balance online if their student grants access to them.  

To view your student’s billing statement online, have your student login to RAMweb and enter/ authorize your e-mail address under the “Change My eBilling Information” link.  This authorization will generate an e-mail to the address they entered.  The e-mail will include a temporary password and a login link.  To login, you will need YOUR email address, YOUR temporary password, and YOUR STUDENT’S CSUID number (begins with 82XXXXXXX).

Important eBilling dates to mark on your calendar are

  • Fall eBill is generated by August 20th and due by September 10th
  • Spring eBill generated by January 20th and due by February 10th

Please note: Fall 2011 eBilling statements will be available starting August 17, 2011.

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FAMweb is Coming!

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Book and AppleWhat is it? 
FAMweb online access was developed to provide families with easier and more access to student information. The new system will:

  • Help families be ‘in the loop’ about students' weekly class schedules
  • Show families grades from the last completed term
  • Allow students to grant access and take away access as the keepers of their educational records

Beginning  in late September, students can sign up parents, family members or other trusted individuals for FAMweb through an option that will be added to RAMweb.  FAMweb provides online access to certain student records to trusted individuals of a student’s choice for a time period of the student’s choosing.  Students can choose to provide online access to one or all of the following through a menu option in RAMweb:

  • Student eBilling statements
  • Student class schedule for the semester in session
  • Student unofficial transcript to date
  • Student grades from the last completed term

What is it not?
FAMweb is not like a parent portal in high school.  It does not include individual grades on assignments. Grades for the most recent completed term are available after the grade submission deadline for instructors, which is usually three business days after finals week.

FAMweb is not meant to be a tool for families to call individual faculty members with questions, as in high school.  Students still need to take the initiative to have tough conversations with their faculty members, as assertive communication is a valuable life skill.

How can I access it?
The university, due to FERPA student privacy laws, cannot provide FAMweb online access to an individual for a student.  Access is granted through RAMweb, the student information portal.  It also is the student’s responsibility to withdraw access if he or she no longer wish to provide it to an individual. Students may choose to withdraw access of any individual at any time.

It is also very important to note that, at this time, access to information will only be available through the FAMweb online portal.

Families should have a conversation with their students about what they will have access to, how families will know if access has changed, and other issues. The university cannot provide or change online access on behalf of a student, parent or family member.

One year after a student graduates, transfers from or leaves CSU, access will no longer be available online to anyone who was previously given permission to that student's account.

How does FERPA affect FAMweb?
FAMweb online access includes information that is protected under FERPA, the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act, so it is important that students who provide access to others understand that by doing so, they are exercising a legal right to provide access to certain student records.

How will this impact eBilling?
For Fall 2011, it will not impact eBilling.  eBilling payments before late September, including those due in the September 12 billing cycle, should be made through the existing eBilling log-in.  FAMweb will be the new access point and log-in for eBilling in late September.  FAMweb access will not be available before that time.  

For current eBilling users, please note your account access will be converted to FAMweb access in late September.  Anyone who currently has eBilling access will not need to re-enroll in FAMweb.  eBilling access will automatically be converted to FAMweb, making it easy for account holders to continue viewing statements and paying bills. Only the log-in location will change.  CSU Billing will communicate the new login information upon conversion.

Who can I call with questions?
Students have the right and the responsibility to grant and remove access at any time, so access questions should be directed to your student.  For all other questions, contact Parent & Family Programs.

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Assessment Results:  RAMFAM Association

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RAMFAM GraphicIn last semester's RAMFAM Association survey, we received tons of valuable information from family members, which helps us make the association even better for future years.  We appreciate you taking a few minutes to send us your thoughts and hope you know we incorporate your feedback at every opportunity.  To start, we want to be sure all families know what RAMFAM is and what it offers families.  

RAMFAM’s primary goals are to support families and students; enhance the connection between families, students and the university administration; provide feedback to the University on student and family issues; communicate family concerns to elected governmental officials; and assist with the recruitment and retention of students and RAMFAM Association members.

During each meeting, we create programming based on your feedback from assessments, emails or other connections.  Our extensive campus relationships allow us to find speakers on programs you find interesting or services on campus you’d like to learn more about to better support your student.  In the last three years, we’ve tackled everything from financial aid to health and safety on campus and we continue to look for ways to share more information with you as family members. 

In the survey feedback, families were specific about two requests:

  • You want to be able to participate in the RAMFAM Association if you live outside of northern Colorado.
  • You want to see the meeting topics well in advance so you can plan to attend the meetings of interest to you.

We listened.  There are many opportunities to become involved with the RAMFAM Association, through joining us in person or online. 

  • We encourage you to attend our meetings from 10:00 am – noon (MST) on the following dates.  Based on your feedback, we’ve locked in dates, times, locations, and topics*:
Date Location Topic
September 10, 2011 LSC 203-205 What to Expect in the Freshman/ Sophomore/ Junior/ Senior Years
October 1, 2011 (Homecoming & Family Weekend) LSC East Ballroom State of CSU with University Leadership
November 12, 2011 LSC 214-216 Career Development During & After College
February 11, 2012 LSC 24-216 Paying for College/ Financing Higher Education
April 21, 2012 TBD Reflections on the Year & Summer Plans

*look for meeting specifics in a separate email and on the Parent & Family homepage!

  • For families living outside of northern Colorado we offer webcasting and blogging opportunities during RAMFAM Association meetings. We also archive the meeting video on the above link to serve as a resource to you when you need it!
  • We encourage you to create a Hometown RAMFAM Club in your area!  Contact Kacee Collard Jarnot if you're interested in participating in an existing club, or starting your own club.
  • We hope you’ll become a fan of our Colorado State Parents and Families Facebook page.

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Homecoming & Family Weekend 2011 - Register Now!

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Homecoming & Family Weekend GraphicThis year's Homecoming & Family Weekend will be held September 30 - October 2, 2011.  The weekend kicks off around noon on Friday, September 30, with Housing Options After the First Year. In this session, panelists will help you explore all of your student's housing options, covering residence halls, fraternity and sorority living, living off-campus, and the pros and cons of purchasing a home in Fort Collins. Saturday brings a morning RAMFAM Association meeting before the Homecoming & Family Weekend Tailgate.  The tailgate provides families an opportunity to connect and show your Ram Pride before the football game vs. San Jose State University.

Over the years, families have asked for more free time during the weekend to spend time with their students.  So this year, we're doing just that – programming for Family Weekend ends after the Homecoming Football game.  We hope you'll enjoy Saturday evening and Sunday morning with your student in Fort Collins before heading home!  We've included a list of the Family Weekend Events, but encourage you to check the Homecoming & Family Weekend website for updates and register today!

Friday, September 30, 2011

  • Housing Options After the First Year
  • Festival & Reunions on the Oval
  • Homecoming Parade
  • Bonfire, Pep Rally & Fireworks 

Saturday, October 1, 2011

  • 5K Race
  • Hillel Bagel Brunch
  • RAMFAM Association Meeting
  • The Official Homecoming & Family Weekend Tailgate
  • Homecoming Football Game (CSU vs. SJSU)

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2011-2012 Supporting Transitions Calendars

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Cover of the 2011-2012 Supporting Transitions Calendar

The 2011-2012 Supporting Transitions: A Guide for Parents and Families calendar is now available!

You can always link to the calendar from the Parent & Family website, but some people prefer a hard copy calendar for the academic year.*

If you would like a hard copy of this year's calendar, please email Kacee Collard Jarnot with your name and address, and your student’s year in school, we'll send you a copy.  Packed with important dates and deadlines, this calendar will help you navigate CSU's academic year timeline, as well as developmental issues your student may be facing.

*As of October 3, 2011, we've handed out all of our hard copies.  Please enjoy the online version!

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Parents Fund

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Student and Family MemberThe Parents Fund at Colorado State University exists to keep parents and families updated about critical campus information, to support Parent & Family Programs, and to serve students' greatest needs.

Is important for us to communicate with parents and families to help you learn about resources, important events and deadlines, and health and safety issues on campus.  Through the Parents Fund, we are able to communicate information with you through these avenues:

  • The RAMFAM Association
  • A monthly e-newsletter
  • Colorado State Parents & Families Facebook page, and
  • The annual Supporting Transitions Calendar.

Through these venues, we work to cover everything from tutoring resources to career options to financial aid assistance to ensure you are familiar with campus resources available to support your student, should they need them.

We also send e-mail updates regarding health and safety or important University updates because we know the health and safety of your students is on your mind.  E-mail and website updates regarding health issues such as the H1N1 flu virus and meningococcal disease, as well as safety issues on campus are made possible through the Parents Fund.

Your contributions to the Parents Fund allow us to continue these communications and services, as well as support leadership, service, diversity and other enriching experiences for your students.  We know students learn both inside and outside of the classroom and the Parents Fund supports programs that create community for all CSU students.

Parents and families are an important component of success in a student’s education and we hope you’ll help us support you and your student on the journey.  If you would like to join other parents and families who contribute to the Parents Fund, please make your gift payable to the Colorado State University Foundation, P.O. Box 1870, Fort Collins, CO  80522-1870 or you can also donate online.

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