Dean of Students

» To parents and families of incoming first year students:

Jerry Price headshotI hope your student is excited to begin their Chapman experience.  I can assure you we are looking forward to having them here as part of our Chapman community.  In preparation of their arrival, I want to share with you some things that your students can expect at Chapman, how we will be working with them during their first year, and how you can play an effective role in their college transition.  You can download my full message here, which was shared via email to all parent and family contacts of incoming first year students in August 2023.  

First of all, I am confident they will soon encounter all of the amazing opportunities they had hoped to discover in college, especially new people, experiences, and perspectives.  At the same time, these new opportunities will be accompanied by many challenges and even the occasional failure.  Please understand that these are not signs that something is wrong!  Challenges and stress are normal and necessary parts of learning how to succeed in a demanding college environment and how to navigate their increasing independence.

We recognize, however, that some students are more prepared for this transition than others.  In fact, the data suggest that more students are arriving at college today with higher levels of stress and anxiety than previous generations.  As a result, even routine challenges may lead them to feel overwhelmed and distressed.  On this page, I have included links to a few short articles that explore this issue.  While some of these articles reference parenting styles, please understand that we would never try to tell you how to parent; we simply have found these articles instructive to understanding today’s students and how best to help them with their college transition.  Included in these articles is a testimonial from one of our first year students from last year that not only captures the doubt and anxiety that first year students typically feel, but also illustrates how students eventually overcome their anxiety and thrive.

So, when your student has a problem and you feel the urge to jump in, I encourage you to consider
doing this instead:

  • Encourage your student to contact us for answers and guidance; in most cases, when a
    parent contacts us we will reach out to the student anyway.
  • Similarly, if your student is feeling overwhelmed, encourage them to contact us for
    support.  Once we process the situation with them, it is usually more manageable than they

It bears repeating that when students partner with us to address their concerns, they develop valuable staff and faculty connections that will benefit them throughout their time at Chapman.  We look forward to working with them, supporting them, and watching them learn and grow throughout their college journey.

Jerry Price, Ph.D.