The mission of the Division of Student Affairs at Penn State Altoona is to provide students with the services and developmental opportunities that will challenge and support their academic experiences, enhance the quality of their lives, and prepare them to function successfully as servant leaders within a diverse, multicultural, and international world. This is a much easier mission to meet if students opt-in to participate! Our services are for all students, regardless of where they live, and at any time throughout the year.
We hope you found this information to be informative, thought-provoking, and reassuring. Below, you'll find the most significant takeaways of our presentation, but if you find yourself with questions, please feel reach out to us.
- Your student is about to embark on a journey that involves an incredible amount of change and choices. They are practicing becoming an adult and that means not every decision will be perfect. Help them see the learning moments whenever stumbles happen.
- Your student is not supposed to know how to do college perfectly! Send them to the professionals (faculty, administration, staff) on campus who are here to help them. Most campus offices are open Monday through Friday from 8:00 a.m.–5:00 p.m. Googling questions with "Penn State Altoona" included will be a helpful first step.
- Your student will be navigating new peer relationships. If your student wants to make a big decision based on advice from peers, send them to the professionals. If your student is struggling with a conflict with their peers, encourage them to try to address it first themselves. Then, if that isn't working, we will be happy to help them with further strategies.
- Your role as your student is in college should change from your role in high school. Work to encourage responsibility, enforce accountability, and remember that the learning experience of figuring out how to move forward from mistakes is vital to be a productive and healthy adult.
- First-year college students are still high school students. There will be a learning curve. Junior year is when we really see the changes culminate, including healthy friendships.
- Your student's experience will be exponentially better if they get involved. Our main goal is not to get your student a job; our main goal is to provide your student with a holistic and comprehensive education that enables them to live healthy lives and be positive contributors to society.
- Your student needs to participate in Welcome Week before classes begin. Research shows that students who participate in Welcome Week programs report higher levels of satisfaction with their college experience, feel more connected to the campus community, and are more likely to do well in their first year. Conversely, we know that students who don't participate in Welcome Week report regret over missing the opportunity.
- College is not easy, but your student can do this! We care about them as individuals and about their success. We look forward to supporting them alongside you for the next two to four years.