Sense & Sensitivity by Harriette Cole

Journalist Questions What To Do About Similar Article

DEAR HARRIETTE: My daughter just graduated from high school and is planning on going to college this fall, but the school hasn’t announced what they are going to do in the coming year. I can tell she is very worried and stressed out about her future. How do I console her during this time when I, too, am uncertain about what happens next? -- Going to College

DEAR GOING TO COLLEGE: Your daughter is in a predicament that thousands of college-bound students are finding themselves facing. Because of the unpredictability of the trajectory of COVID-19, educational institutions do not know if it is safe to have students clustered closely together for long periods of time. It is virtually impossible in most classroom settings for students to sit 6 feet apart. So many schools are considering staggering classroom hours, extending online learning into the fall and potentially incorporating a combination of both.

Now is the time for your daughter to be patient as she prepares to approach college without knowing all of the details of how she will begin. She may need to be more independent as a learner -- much like what she probably had to do at the end of high school when most students were practicing distance learning.

If your daughter feels driven to have a personal contact at the school, she can reach out to the administrative office to see if anyone is answering calls. Also, if she already knows her field of study, she may be able to reach someone in that department or school to see if she can make a meaningful connection with a professor or administrator who can give her insight as to what is unfolding behind the scenes.

(Harriette Cole is a lifestylist and founder of DREAMLEAPERS, an initiative to help people access and activate their dreams. You can send questions to askharriette@harriettecole.com or c/o Andrews McMeel Syndication, 1130 Walnut St., Kansas City, MO 64106.)

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