Skip to main content

HomeStyle: A New Curriculum

Jul 18, 2015 02:05PM ● Published by Laurie Fox

Sending a child off to college can be one of the biggest undertakings that a family will face. Most spend years preparing their student to make that big leap to higher education.

And while securing admission and paying for college are daunting tasks, there are some other important skills that your student needs for college: how to successfully live away from home for the first time and how to make the academic leap.

Higher education and financial experts say how a student handles these life hurdles can mean the difference between them thriving in college — or ending up back on your couch.

Parents and K-12 teachers likely have provided increasing responsibility and have allowed students more calendar control.

But officials say new college students can be their own worst enemies when it comes to certain “soft skills” like how they spend their time, how they study and how they manage their money. The best part about college, students initially discover, is that their parents and teachers won’t be nagging them about these things every day. That also can be their downfall.

“Some of these kids are so over-programmed and they’re so used to mom or dad moving them off to their next activity,” says Heath Einstein, director of freshman admission at Texas Christian University in Fort Worth. “In college, there’s no one telling them where to be and when to be there. It really jolts some kids.”

Catherine Marrs, a Dallas college admission consultant, says families should start expecting their children to be responsible for their own schedule in high school so they’re learning how to manage their lives in college. “Past the ninth grade, students don’t need their parents to tell them when they have swim practice. They need to learn that accountability,” she says. “Parents need to let their students take ownership of their opportunities and their schedule.”

A high school student may work hard to build a solid academic record and an impressive resume that gets them into the college of their choice. But higher education officials say that often isn’t enough to guarantee academic success at the university level.

Many strong students are heading toward college without “non-cognitive” skills that can benefit them the most, things like time management, calendar planning and a willingness to ask for help.

College officials do admit that it can be a steep learning curve from high school to the university classroom and they’re doing more than ever to better prepare students and providing more resources to help students get comfortable with college.

“They have to learn that the first time they fail, they can’t give up,” says Bill Coppola, president of the Tarrant County College Southeast campus in Arlington. “And they don’t always understand when to ask for help.”

Coppola says many schools provide peer mentors to help students find their way and offer supplemental instruction to aid struggling students. “It’s about balancing the work load and being able to compartmentalize your brain,” he says.

Local college and university officials suggest finding the student advising office and student success center early on and to be proactive and reach out for help from a professor or a tutor before they fall behind. Getting a calendar and sticking to it — remembering to block out enough time for daily studying — also helps shore up time management.

Kimberly van Noort, associate vice provost for undergraduate studies at the University of Texas at Arlington, also directs UTA’s University College program which provides support resources and academic success initiatives like advising and tutoring. She recommends that parents help ease the college transition by making it OK for their children to talk about their successes — as well as the times when they’re not feeling so confident. “Over the summer before college, parents can work on building those lines of communication,” van Noort says. “A lot of students are afraid that they’ll disappoint their parents if they’re homesick. So they don’t say anything.”

College also may be the first time that students have had discretionary income and ample opportunities to spend it away from the watchful eyes of their parents. Even with a meal plan, the temptation to order a pizza, indulge in a daily latte or eat out with friends can dent the checkbook. Social outings and buying toiletries also can require more money than students realize. Many colleges include on their web sites cost calculators and lists of suggested ancillary expenses and additional college fees and costs that parents should keep in mind.

Karen Freeman, a Mansfield CPA and financial advisor, says many parents are caught off guard by how fast such spending adds up. And they often haven’t had a frank pre-college discussion with their children about how much they can spend and who will foot the bill for major expenses such as cell phone bills, a car, gas, clothing and insurance. “The incidentals can really add up,” Freeman says. “It can help to set some spending guidelines or give them only a certain amount to live on for two weeks or a month. They have to have a limit or they just keep spending.”

Freeman says budgeting is a valuable skill for students to learn because it makes them aware of where the money goes. Whether it’s in high school or college, she says families can benefit from setting monetary limits. “You have to draw the line,” says Freeman.

Marrs recommends working with students in high school to create an allowance that students have to use to pay for certain things. “Some of these kids go off to college and never learned to manage their lives,” she says. “They need expectations and boundaries early on.”

College preparation can be a whirlwind of deadlines and choices that can take focus away from some less noticeable but equally important life skills conversations that parents should have with their college-bound students. Talking about money and time may not seem important now, but the payoff can be great in the long run. 

Read More

Greg Yates Photo courtesy of Texas AM

MHS Alum Yates Turns Pro, Performing Well

Greg Yates, graduate of Mansfield High School, and most recently, Texas A&M this year, joined golf's professional ranks at the end of May. Read More » 

 

Tobi Fawehinmi of the United States competes in the Mens 200m - T46 heats on day 2 of the London 2012 Paralympic Games at Olympic Stadium on August 31 2012 in London England Photo courtesy of Julian FinneyGetty Images Europe

Summit Alumnus Sets World Record

Mansfield native has had a great year, competing for University of Texas-Arlington and Team USA. Read More » 

 

Mansfield High Alumna Debuts First EP Album and Music Video - Feb 26 2015 0252PM

Mansfield High Alumna Debuts First EP Album and Music Video

Shaina Rhodes, class of 2006, made the big move to Music City from Mansfield just one year ago, and has now released her self-titled EP, along with a music video of single "Raisin' Hell." Read More » 

 

Like what you're reading? Subscribe to Mansfield Magazine's free newsletter to get regular updates



Embed this content on your website

Embed
Home+Garden, In Print in this issue back to school 2015 homestyle summer college columns
  • Holiday Grease Roundup

    12/13/2017
    08:00AM

    Don't pour your holiday grease down the drain—round it up and recycle it for free instead! Hol...


  • Photos with Santa at Traders Village

    12/13/2017
    10:00AM — 05:00PM

    Santa photos at Traders Village start on November 25th. Kids of all ages can have their photo tak...


  • Little Naturalist

    12/13/2017
    10:30AM — 11:15AM

    Winter Weather- Children ages 3‐5 will learn about nature through discovery. We will read, sing...


  • Traditional Ornament Help-Create Events

    12/13/2017
    02:00PM — 06:00PM

    Bring the kids and drop in for one of Vetro’s Traditional Ornament Help-Create events, *select da...


  • Extreme Ornament Help-Create Events

    12/13/2017
    02:00PM — 06:00PM

    Unleash your inner elf during Vetro’s Extreme Ornament Help-Create events, *select dates and time...


  • Holiday in the Park 2017

    12/13/2017
    02:00PM — 10:00PM

    Holiday in the Park is back for select days from November 17-January 7 at Six Flags Over Texas. I...


  • Enchant Christmas Light Maze & Market

    12/13/2017
    05:00PM — 11:00PM

    The Lone Star State is about to get a lot brighter as Enchant, The World's Largest Christmas Ligh...


  • 2017 Magical Winter Lights

    12/13/2017
    05:00PM — 10:00PM

    Magical Winter Lights is a spectacular, larger-than-life festival that presents a fresh multicult...


  • Prairie Lights 2017

    12/13/2017
    06:00PM — 09:00PM

    Prairie Lights is the state's premier holiday drive-through park featuring more than 5 million li...


  • Cirque Du Soleil Varekai

    12/13/2017
    07:30PM

    After 15 years of performing around the world and thrilling more than 11 million people, Varekai ...


  • Holiday Grease Roundup

    12/14/2017
    08:00AM

    Don't pour your holiday grease down the drain—round it up and recycle it for free instead! Hol...


  • Photos with Santa at Traders Village

    12/14/2017
    10:00AM — 05:00PM

    Santa photos at Traders Village start on November 25th. Kids of all ages can have their photo tak...


  • Extreme Ornament Help-Create Events

    12/14/2017
    02:00PM — 06:00PM

    Unleash your inner elf during Vetro’s Extreme Ornament Help-Create events, *select dates and time...


  • Traditional Ornament Help-Create Events

    12/14/2017
    02:00PM — 06:00PM

    Bring the kids and drop in for one of Vetro’s Traditional Ornament Help-Create events, *select da...


  • Holiday in the Park 2017

    12/14/2017
    02:00PM — 10:00PM

    Holiday in the Park is back for select days from November 17-January 7 at Six Flags Over Texas. I...


  • Enchant Christmas Light Maze & Market

    12/14/2017
    05:00PM — 11:00PM

    The Lone Star State is about to get a lot brighter as Enchant, The World's Largest Christmas Ligh...


  • 2017 Magical Winter Lights

    12/14/2017
    05:00PM — 10:00PM

    Magical Winter Lights is a spectacular, larger-than-life festival that presents a fresh multicult...


  • Prairie Lights 2017

    12/14/2017
    06:00PM — 09:00PM

    Prairie Lights is the state's premier holiday drive-through park featuring more than 5 million li...


  • Cirque Du Soleil Varekai

    12/14/2017
    07:30PM

    After 15 years of performing around the world and thrilling more than 11 million people, Varekai ...


  • Holiday Grease Roundup

    12/15/2017
    08:00AM

    Don't pour your holiday grease down the drain—round it up and recycle it for free instead! Hol...


  • Photos with Santa at Traders Village

    12/15/2017
    10:00AM — 05:00PM

    Santa photos at Traders Village start on November 25th. Kids of all ages can have their photo tak...


  • Traditional Ornament Help-Create Events

    12/15/2017
    02:00PM — 06:00PM

    Bring the kids and drop in for one of Vetro’s Traditional Ornament Help-Create events, *select da...


  • Extreme Ornament Help-Create Events

    12/15/2017
    02:00PM — 06:00PM

    Unleash your inner elf during Vetro’s Extreme Ornament Help-Create events, *select dates and time...


  • Holiday in the Park 2017

    12/15/2017
    02:00PM — 10:00PM

    Holiday in the Park is back for select days from November 17-January 7 at Six Flags Over Texas. I...


  • Enchant Christmas Light Maze & Market

    12/15/2017
    05:00PM — 11:00PM

    The Lone Star State is about to get a lot brighter as Enchant, The World's Largest Christmas Ligh...


  • 2017 Magical Winter Lights

    12/15/2017
    05:00PM — 11:00PM

    Magical Winter Lights is a spectacular, larger-than-life festival that presents a fresh multicult...


  • Fireside Holidays at Four Seasons

    12/15/2017
    06:00PM — 08:00PM

    Don't get your tinsel in a tangle this holiday season trying to figure out fun things to do with ...


  • Prairie Lights 2017

    12/15/2017
    06:00PM — 09:00PM

    Prairie Lights is the state's premier holiday drive-through park featuring more than 5 million li...


  • Interlochen Lights 2017

    12/15/2017
    07:00PM — 11:00PM

    "Texas Best" Christmas Lights (as voted by the viewers of the Texas Country Reporter TV Show) are...


  • Cirque Du Soleil Varekai

    12/15/2017
    07:30PM

    After 15 years of performing around the world and thrilling more than 11 million people, Varekai ...


  • Holiday Grease Roundup

    12/16/2017
    08:00AM

    Don't pour your holiday grease down the drain—round it up and recycle it for free instead! Hol...


  • Winter Chemistry (5Y+)

    12/16/2017
    09:00AM — 10:00AM

    The days are getting shorter, and the weather is getting colder. No snow in Texas? No problem...


  • Gingerbread Workshop Extravaganza

    12/16/2017
    10:00AM — 04:00PM

    It’s that time of year! Lights are being strung, stockings are being hung and the creation of con...


  • Breakfast with Santa at Four Seasons

    12/16/2017
    10:00AM — 12:00PM

    The jolly ol' elf joins Four Seasons Dallas for breakfast and holiday crafts. Kids, bring your C...


  • Photos with Santa at Traders Village

    12/16/2017
    10:00AM — 05:00PM

    Santa photos at Traders Village start on November 25th. Kids of all ages can have their photo tak...


  • Brunch Time!

    12/16/2017
    10:30AM — 11:30AM

    Watch our resident critters enjoy their Brunch every Saturday at 10am! Our arachnids and amphibia...


  • Painting in the Park

    12/16/2017
    10:30AM — 12:00PM

    Join us for a nature-themed painting class at Oliver Nature Park. An artist will guide you step-b...


  • Invasive Species (16y+)

    12/16/2017
    12:30PM — 01:30PM

    Plants and animals that are not native to an area can spell trouble for the ecosystem. What a...


  • Extreme Ornament Help-Create Events

    12/16/2017
    02:00PM — 06:00PM

    Unleash your inner elf during Vetro’s Extreme Ornament Help-Create events, *select dates and time...


  • Traditional Ornament Help-Create Events

    12/16/2017
    02:00PM — 06:00PM

    Bring the kids and drop in for one of Vetro’s Traditional Ornament Help-Create events, *select da...


  • Holiday in the Park 2017

    12/16/2017
    02:00PM — 10:00PM

    Holiday in the Park is back for select days from November 17-January 7 at Six Flags Over Texas. I...


  • The Nutcracker 2017

    12/16/2017
    02:00PM

    Join the Art Ballet Academy on a magical trip to the land of the Sugarplum Fairy, waltzing snowfl...


  • The Mansfield Public Library presents the Dallas Puppet Theater featuring lively, hand-crafted ma...


  • Enchant Christmas Light Maze & Market

    12/16/2017
    05:00PM — 11:00PM

    The Lone Star State is about to get a lot brighter as Enchant, The World's Largest Christmas Ligh...


  • 2017 Magical Winter Lights

    12/16/2017
    05:00PM — 11:00PM

    Magical Winter Lights is a spectacular, larger-than-life festival that presents a fresh multicult...


  • The Nutcracker 2017

    12/16/2017
    06:00PM

    Join the Art Ballet Academy on a magical trip to the land of the Sugarplum Fairy, waltzing snowfl...


  • Prairie Lights 2017

    12/16/2017
    06:00PM — 09:00PM

    Prairie Lights is the state's premier holiday drive-through park featuring more than 5 million li...


  • Winter Solstice Celebration - a Free Event

    12/16/2017
    06:30PM — 09:30PM

    Entertainment highlights the Winter Solstice Event presented by the Labyrinth Walk Coffee. Admiss...


  • There will be live music from Scott Welmaker and Hambone Radio, succulent BBQ from Big D BBQ, dri...


  • Interlochen Lights 2017

    12/16/2017
    07:00PM — 11:00PM

    "Texas Best" Christmas Lights (as voted by the viewers of the Texas Country Reporter TV Show) are...


  • Cirque Du Soleil Varekai

    12/16/2017
    07:30PM

    After 15 years of performing around the world and thrilling more than 11 million people, Varekai ...


  • Feel the excitement as the Las Colinas Symphony Orchestra celebrates a Holiday in Vienna! Joined ...


  • Holiday Grease Roundup

    12/17/2017
    08:00AM

    Don't pour your holiday grease down the drain—round it up and recycle it for free instead! Hol...


  • Photos with Santa at Traders Village

    12/17/2017
    10:00AM — 05:00PM

    Santa photos at Traders Village start on November 25th. Kids of all ages can have their photo tak...


  • Gingerbread Workshop Extravaganza

    12/17/2017
    11:00AM — 05:00PM

    It’s that time of year! Lights are being strung, stockings are being hung and the creation of con...


  • Traditional Ornament Help-Create Events

    12/17/2017
    02:00PM — 06:00PM

    Bring the kids and drop in for one of Vetro’s Traditional Ornament Help-Create events, *select da...


  • Extreme Ornament Help-Create Events

    12/17/2017
    02:00PM — 06:00PM

    Unleash your inner elf during Vetro’s Extreme Ornament Help-Create events, *select dates and time...


  • Holiday in the Park 2017

    12/17/2017
    02:00PM — 10:00PM

    Holiday in the Park is back for select days from November 17-January 7 at Six Flags Over Texas. I...


  • Enchant Christmas Light Maze & Market

    12/17/2017
    05:00PM — 11:00PM

    The Lone Star State is about to get a lot brighter as Enchant, The World's Largest Christmas Ligh...


  • 2017 Magical Winter Lights

    12/17/2017
    05:00PM — 10:00PM

    Magical Winter Lights is a spectacular, larger-than-life festival that presents a fresh multicult...


  • Prairie Lights 2017

    12/17/2017
    06:00PM — 09:00PM

    Prairie Lights is the state's premier holiday drive-through park featuring more than 5 million li...


  • Interlochen Lights 2017

    12/17/2017
    07:00PM — 11:00PM

    "Texas Best" Christmas Lights (as voted by the viewers of the Texas Country Reporter TV Show) are...


  • Cirque Du Soleil Varekai

    12/17/2017
    07:30PM

    After 15 years of performing around the world and thrilling more than 11 million people, Varekai ...


  • DFW Solar Awareness Day

    12/18/2017
    12:00AM

    Hello! We are putting together a day for solar awareness in the DFW area! Talk to your friends...


  • Mansfield Sunrise Toastmasters

    12/18/2017
    07:00AM — 08:00AM

    Want to be better at negotiating your salary with your boss? Networking at business functions? Pi...


  • Holiday Grease Roundup

    12/18/2017
    08:00AM

    Don't pour your holiday grease down the drain—round it up and recycle it for free instead! Hol...


  • Photos with Santa at Traders Village

    12/18/2017
    10:00AM — 05:00PM

    Santa photos at Traders Village start on November 25th. Kids of all ages can have their photo tak...


  • Traditional Ornament Help-Create Events

    12/18/2017
    02:00PM — 06:00PM

    Bring the kids and drop in for one of Vetro’s Traditional Ornament Help-Create events, *select da...


  • Extreme Ornament Help-Create Events

    12/18/2017
    02:00PM — 06:00PM

    Unleash your inner elf during Vetro’s Extreme Ornament Help-Create events, *select dates and time...


  • Holiday in the Park 2017

    12/18/2017
    02:00PM — 10:00PM

    Holiday in the Park is back for select days from November 17-January 7 at Six Flags Over Texas. I...


  • Enchant Christmas Light Maze & Market

    12/18/2017
    05:00PM — 11:00PM

    The Lone Star State is about to get a lot brighter as Enchant, The World's Largest Christmas Ligh...


  • 2017 Magical Winter Lights

    12/18/2017
    05:00PM — 10:00PM

    Magical Winter Lights is a spectacular, larger-than-life festival that presents a fresh multicult...


  • Prairie Lights 2017

    12/18/2017
    06:00PM — 09:00PM

    Prairie Lights is the state's premier holiday drive-through park featuring more than 5 million li...


  • Interlochen Lights 2017

    12/18/2017
    07:00PM — 11:00PM

    "Texas Best" Christmas Lights (as voted by the viewers of the Texas Country Reporter TV Show) are...


  • Holiday Grease Roundup

    12/19/2017
    08:00AM

    Don't pour your holiday grease down the drain—round it up and recycle it for free instead! Hol...


  • Photos with Santa at Traders Village

    12/19/2017
    10:00AM — 05:00PM

    Santa photos at Traders Village start on November 25th. Kids of all ages can have their photo tak...


  • Extreme Ornament Help-Create Events

    12/19/2017
    02:00PM — 06:00PM

    Unleash your inner elf during Vetro’s Extreme Ornament Help-Create events, *select dates and time...


  • Traditional Ornament Help-Create Events

    12/19/2017
    02:00PM — 06:00PM

    Bring the kids and drop in for one of Vetro’s Traditional Ornament Help-Create events, *select da...


  • Holiday in the Park 2017

    12/19/2017
    02:00PM — 10:00PM

    Holiday in the Park is back for select days from November 17-January 7 at Six Flags Over Texas. I...


  • Enchant Christmas Light Maze & Market

    12/19/2017
    05:00PM — 11:00PM

    The Lone Star State is about to get a lot brighter as Enchant, The World's Largest Christmas Ligh...


  • 2017 Magical Winter Lights

    12/19/2017
    05:00PM — 10:00PM

    Magical Winter Lights is a spectacular, larger-than-life festival that presents a fresh multicult...


  • Prairie Lights 2017

    12/19/2017
    06:00PM — 09:00PM

    Prairie Lights is the state's premier holiday drive-through park featuring more than 5 million li...


  • Interlochen Lights 2017

    12/19/2017
    07:00PM — 11:00PM

    "Texas Best" Christmas Lights (as voted by the viewers of the Texas Country Reporter TV Show) are...


  • 2017 Magical Winter Lights

    12/15/2017
    05:00PM — 11:00PM

    Magical Winter Lights is a spectacular, larger-than-life festival that presents a fresh multicult...


  • Prairie Lights 2017

    12/15/2017
    06:00PM — 09:00PM

    Prairie Lights is the state's premier holiday drive-through park featuring more than 5 million li...


  • Interlochen Lights 2017

    12/15/2017
    07:00PM — 11:00PM

    "Texas Best" Christmas Lights (as voted by the viewers of the Texas Country Reporter TV Show) are...


  • The Nutcracker 2017

    12/16/2017
    02:00PM

    Join the Art Ballet Academy on a magical trip to the land of the Sugarplum Fairy, waltzing snowfl...


  • The Mansfield Public Library presents the Dallas Puppet Theater featuring lively, hand-crafted ma...


  • There will be live music from Scott Welmaker and Hambone Radio, succulent BBQ from Big D BBQ, dri...


  • Enchant Christmas Light Maze & Market

    12/18/2017
    05:00PM — 11:00PM

    The Lone Star State is about to get a lot brighter as Enchant, The World's Largest Christmas Ligh...


  • Third Thursday - Historic Christmas

    12/21/2017
    05:00PM — 08:00PM

    It all happens 5:00pm - 8:00pm in historic downtown as local businesses and merchants extend thei...


 

Image title
Mansfield Area High School Sports

Community Champions