Dear Class I Parents,
On a chilly day in early April, small groups of faculty and members of the senior class scattered at restaurants in and around Dedham. This annual event marks the first of many opportunities for us to join together and to reflect on the experience of Nobles’ 151st graduating class. Over dishes of pasta or lo mein or burgers, we looked forward and looked back. What do you remember about your first day at Nobles? What was your favorite moment? What advice would you give your ninth grade self? What’s still on your bucket list? The pace of these final weeks is a brisk one, and we are encouraging our seniors to take a deep breath as often as they can and to seize these moments to gather together, to show appreciation for each other and those around them, and to think about how to finish well.
We know that as the seniors look back on the years they have spent at Nobles, they are also looking eagerly ahead to the next chapter in their lives. It is in this spirit that we host our Senior Transitions Nights. Last fall, we welcomed Katie Koestner, an expert on sexual assault and drugs and alcohol abuse. This spring, in collaboration with our colleagues in Graduate Affairs, we invited a group of Nobles alumni back to campus for our first Career Panel. Each guest shared the highlights and lessons of his/her professional journey, and then our students selected two “breakout sessions” where they had the opportunity to connect with and ask specific questions of our speakers. We hope our students realized that a professional path is rarely straightforward and often includes unexpected twists and happy accidents along the way. We also hope that our seniors walked away from this event with a better sense of the many wonderful career resources available to Nobles students upon graduation.
We know that the Class I students are not the only ones experiencing a transition, and if you are interested, we have included a list of books at the end of this letter that parents have found insightful as their students transition to college. If you know of other works and/or resources that you have found helpful, please send them along.
As we head into the final weeks, please do not hesitate to contact us if you have any questions about anything that is happening on campus. While it’s certainly a hectic time, it is also an exciting and joyful time on campus. We are proud of the way that our Class I students have set a positive tone for this school year, and we are confident that they will continue to lead the school with integrity and spirit in the final weeks ahead.
We have been honored to spend this year with your children, and we look forward to celebrating our seniors with you in the weeks to come!
Kim Libby and Mike Kalin
Parent Transition Resources:
Don't Tell Me What to Do, Just Send Money: The Essential Parenting Guide to the College Years, by Helen E. Johnson & Christine Schelhas-Miller (St. Martin's Griffin, 2000). Written by two women involved with parent programs at Cornell, this book touches on virtually everything from the summer before first-year to post-college planning. The format consists of pairs of hypothetical conversations between parent and child on an issue: the first disastrous, the second, based on the principles the authors espouse, more effective.
Getting the Best Out of College: A Professor, a Dean and a Student Tell You How to Maximize Your Experience, by Peter Feaver, Sue Wasiolek, and Anne Crossman.
Letting Go: A Parents' Guide to Understanding the College Years, by Karen Levin Coburn and Madge Lawrence Treeger (HarperPerennial, 1997). A slightly dated but still useful summary of the psychology of late adolescence followed by practical tips drawn from students and parents from a number of colleges.
Making the Most of College: Students Speak Their Minds, by Richard J. Light (Harvard, 2001). A fascinating and highly readable account of the results of a project at Harvard in which students were asked what had been most useful to them in their college careers.
When Your Kid Goes to College: A Parent’s Survival Guide, by Carol Barkin (Avon Books, 1999). A straightforward look at the issues, from the "Summer of Anticipation" to "Advice from a College Senior."