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Knox College

Division of Student Development

One Community

Dear Parents,

On behalf of the Division of Student Development, I am pleased to welcome you to the Knox family. As the parent of a Knox student you are an important part of our community, and our partnership with you is critical to your student's success. Sending a student off to college can be an exciting yet bittersweet milestone. With that in mind, we have a number of events planned just for you during Family and Friends Orientation on Thursday, September 7. You can access the complete schedule, but I'd like to particularly encourage you to join us for the following:

1:15-1:45 p.m.
Money Matters
We know that financing your student's education can be complex. Financial Aid and Business Office staff will break down the aid and payment processes and provide tips for managing educational expenses.
Kresge Recital Hall, Ford Center for the Fine Arts

2:00-3:15 p.m.
Living and Learning at Knox College: What Families Need to Know
Hear from College faculty and staff about critical topics including academic advising, safety, housing, billing, and helping your student make a successful transition into campus life. (Your student will have a mandatory meeting with their Resident Assistant at this time.)
Kresge Recital Hall, Ford Center for the Fine Arts

3:30-4:15 p.m.
Welcome to Knox
Join President Teresa Amott and members of the college senior staff for your family's official welcome into the Knox community.
East Lawn, Old Main

4:30-6:00 p.m.
President's Reception for Family & Friends
Wind down with fellow families at a casual reception at the official residence of the Knox College President.
640 North Prairie Street

Learn more about the logistics of orientation check in and move in at the end of this email.

For both parents and students, the college years are wonderful when all is going well. As someone who cares deeply about all of our Knox students, I know nothing feels better than hearing them say, "I love it here!" (And they will.) But these years will also be a time of challenge and personal growth, and sometimes there will be bumps in the road. It's good to remember that while these bumps can be jarring, they often teach some of life's most important lessons.

In the first year, students may be challenged by higher academic expectations, the frustration of roommate conflicts, and even occasional loneliness. Those who draw on their own resources to find solutions will be rewarded with increased self-confidence and the tenacity to handle future problems. Likewise, parents who respect this process will be rewarded with the knowledge that they have raised independent thinkers who can cope and succeed in a new environment.

When challenges arise, students will naturally turn to their parents for guidance. When this happens, you have an opportunity to point your child toward the appropriate campus resource or to talk about the conversations the student might want to have with a professor, roommate, or coach. The well-timed arrival of a package of homemade cookies—large enough to share—can also work wonders. You might remind your student of a time when he or she succeeded under challenging circumstances and express your confidence in his or her ability to do so again and again.

As someone who wants to help, I know how strong the temptation is to fix the problem myself. Like you, I am learning to resist that temptation. On occasion, I have had to remind myself that, though the going may be occasionally rough, success and competence are achieved through the student's hard work—not mine.

One way students will start building that competence is through two online learning programs: AlcoholEdu for College and Haven—Understanding Sexual Assault. Your student received an email earlier this month asking them to complete both of these programs prior to orientation. You can learn more about them at AlcoholEdu for Parents and Haven for Parents.

Below are some typical situations we see here in the Division of Student Development, with suggested ways in which you and your student can work through them successfully.

  • A student performs poorly on an exam and calls home upset and disappointed. As a parent, you might suggest that he or she speak soon with the professor to find out how to do better next time and to discuss study skills that may help. Your student's faculty advisor is another valuable resource, or you might suggest seeking assistance from the Center for Teaching and Learning. Approaching professors and accessing resources encourages the student to take ownership of the problem and find solutions to remedy it.

  • A student is not getting along with a roommate and wants to move out right away. Here, a good resolution can come from your student talking with the roommate (with advice from you, perhaps, about words to use) or asking the Resident Assistant or a staff member in Campus Life to help both roommates work through the issues. Negotiating differences is often preferable to moving out and can be a good exercise in conflict resolution.

  • If the student is having trouble meeting people or making friends, you may want to suggest getting involved with clubs, intramural sports, community service, or other options. Your student might seek advice from a Resident Assistant, Orientation Leader or someone in the Division of Student Development; we are always happy to talk with students. We know that students who actively try to create their own happiness will carry this positive pattern through adulthood.

There may be a point at which you feel the need to speak with someone at the College about a challenge your student is facing. This letter is not intended to discourage you from placing that call. No one knows your student better than you do, and you should trust your instincts about when to seek advice and assistance. If you are ever unsure about whether or not to call, please reach out to the Division of Student Development at 309-341-7222 and we'll talk it through.

My colleagues and I look forward to working in partnership with you with the goal of helping your student achieve great academic and personal success. Knox is grateful for the faith that you have placed in your student and in this institution. Together, we can make these next years truly transformative.

Warm regards,

Anne Ehrlich Signature

Anne Ehrlich
Vice President for Student Development

Check in/Move in Information for Families

Where and when do we check in for New Student Orientation?
Check in runs from 9:00-11:00 a.m. on Thursday September 7, in the Ford Center for the Fine Arts (500 S. Prairie Street) on the Knox Campus. This is where you and your student will pick up your orientation packets, residence hall keys, and schedules.

What if we arrive late?
It is important that you try to arrive by 11:00 a.m. so your student does not miss out on any planned orientation activities. If arriving late is unavoidable, please call the Division of Student Development at 309-341-7222 once you arrive on campus. Student Development staff will help you coordinate your next steps (picking up keys, finding your student's orientation group, etc.). After 4:30 p.m., contact Campus Safety at 309-341-7979.

How does residence hall move in work?
After you have checked in at the Center for the Fine Arts, you can proceed to your student's assigned residence hall to begin moving in. Campus Safety staff will be positioned around campus to help direct you. Once you arrive at your residence hall, Student Orientation Leaders will assist you in unloading your car and transporting your student's belongings to his or her room.

What about lunch?
Knox College Dining Services will offer assorted boxed lunches for your convenience. Grab one to take back to your student's room or take a break with other families. Lunch is free for students and $5 for family and friends. You can also feel free to explore some of the local Galesburg dining options. (Please remember that the Money Matters session begins at 1:15 p.m.)

Who do we contact if we have questions?
The Division of Student Development will be happy to answer any questions you may have about orientation or your transition to Knox. Feel free to call us at 309-341-7222 or email


All Other Fall Athletes Arrive

August 18

International Student Pre-Orientation Program

September 4-6

International Family & Friends Orientation

September 4-5

New Student Orientation

September 7-10

Family & Friends Orientation

September 7

Fall Term Classes Begin

September 11

Family & Friends Weekend

September 22-24 | 309-341-7222

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