Takeaways from Senior Parent College Night

On Thursday, September 28, Ross School’s College Counseling office hosted an information session for the parents of senior students. The session was designed to provide families of seniors with an opportunity to ask questions about navigating the college application process, as well as to inform them of important upcoming dates. If you were unable to attend last week’s event, here are some tips for helping your child through the college admissions process:

Let your children own this process. Much like that of the College Counseling office, parents’ primary role during the college admissions process is to support the student. This process is different for each child. Though this time is known to be stressful, it is important to let your children drive the process. Encourage them to make use of the College Counseling office’s resources, such as application help, on-campus college admissions sessions, and one-on-one appointments. Likewise, parents are welcome to ask questions by sending emails to, calling, or making an appointment with college counselors for some one-on-one time! Senior parents wishing to make an appointment should contact Jacquelyn Lowery with their availability.

Be aware of application deadlines. Students applying Early Decision (binding) or Early Action may face application deadlines as early as November 1. Some of the ways that you can support your child in completing their applications on time include proofreading their application materials, if your child is comfortable with you helping. Some children are very private about their essays in particular, but don’t worry; the counselors do proof all essays and applications. If you intend to apply for need-based financial aid, complete the Free Application for Federal Financial Aid.

Understand your responsibilities. When completing the applications, make note of the items that are to be provided by the family versus those provided by the school. For example, the College Counseling office sends official copies of transcripts as well as teacher recommendations to the colleges of your child’s choice. These records of your child’s performance, along with a copy of our school profile, are sent electronically through Naviance’s secure eDocs system. Students can verify that supporting documentation has been sent through both Naviance and the common application, if the university is a common app school. Families are responsible for submitting applications, paying the application fee, and sending test scores as needed. It is essential that the student keeps all information in Naviance Family Connection up to date and accurate.

Encourage effective stress management techniques. Between college applications and Senior Projects, students can find their final year of high school to be emotionally overwhelming. Encourage your child to be open about their feelings of stress and to take advantage of opportunities to decompress.

If you have any questions about college admissions, please contact collegecounseling@ross.org.