November 2017
Quick Links
Important Dates
Nov. 22: Thanksgiving recess begins at noon (Residence halls open with limited services)

Nov. 27: Classes resume

Dec 1: Last day to apply for spring graduation

Dec. 11-14: Final Exams week

Dec. 15: Semester ends. Residence halls close at 7 p.m. for winter recess

Dec. 16:

Dec. 19: Final grades available through GoWMU late in the day

Dec. 22: University closed through Jan. 1, 2018

Jan 2, 2018: University reopens

Jan 6: Residence halls reopen at 10 a.m.

Jan 8: Spring semester classes begin. Tuition and fees due. 

Looking Ahead
Jan 12: Last day to drop/add classes

Jan. 15: MLK Jr. Day Recess

Jan. 16: Last day to receive 100% refund

Jan. 17: $100 late add fee begins. Begin recording withdrawals as W on transcript

Jan. 18: Last day to receive 90% refund for complete withdrawal

Jan. 22: Last day to receive 50% refund for partial withdrawal

Feb. 5: Last day to receive 50% refund for complete withdrawal

March 2: Spirit Day (no classes). Last day to receive 25% refund for complete withdrawal

March 5-9: Spring Break

April 28: Commencement

Complete University calendar of events.  
Don't forget about your FAFSA!

The 2018-19
  FAFSA (Free Application for Federal Student Aid) opened Oct. 1 with a priority deadline of March 1, 2018 for the state of Michigan
Flu Shots
  Flu Patient  
Sindecuse is offering under- and uninsured WMU students no-cost flu shots. Encourage your student to make an appointment today at (269) 387-3287.
(Provided with generous support from Alana's Foundation.)
Annual Security Report 
The WMU Department of Public Safety considers safety and security of the campus community to be paramount. The department believes in full transparency and publishes the Annual Security and Fire Safety Report each year in accordance with the Clery Act. 

Answer the November Question of the Month
regarding campus safety.

Home for the Holidays

As we move into Thanksgiving weekend, both you and your student are likely hoping to share some enjoyable time together. This is an excellent opportunity to  appreciate your college student's continued development into a maturing young adult. You've looked forward to this weekend for a long time, so what could possibly go wrong?  

Sometimes the difference in holiday expectations can cause conflict in the family. You may be planning get-togethers with extended family and lots of close bonding time with your student. Your student may be fantasizing about sleeping in till noon without the distraction of roommates or class schedules and plenty of social time with old friends.

The change in independence might also cause a shock. You may have house rules, a set curfew, and expectations that your student will keep you well-informed of their whereabouts. On the other hand, your student has been independent at school for several months and hasn't had to answer to anyone regarding curfews or use of time. This disparity can cause an unexpected power struggle and ruin what should be a pleasant opportunity to re-connect with each other.

We encourage you to come to some mutual agreement to help minimize conflict. Here are some thoughts to assist in making your holiday season memorable and conflict-free. (Keep this article handy for the much longer break in December when changes really become apparent.)

Before the holiday weekend:
Talk together about how you want to spend your time and try not to plan every moment. Protect some time together, but also plan for time apart. It can be challenging for students to balance quality time with family and still visit with friends. Your support and willingness to allow your student some space to make these decisions will be much appreciated.  

Consider that your student is not only re-adjusting to being at home, but also discovering that friends are changing and growing. If this is unsettling, you can be a great source of comfort as your student confronts and comes to terms with these changes.

Talk about house rules and how you might adjust them to accommodate your student's growing independence. Students at college quickly learn to make their own decisions and work through both intended and unintended consequences. Allowing expanded freedom back home can create a challenge for you, but also helps to further the growing adult-to-adult relationship that you are both working towards. Students also need to be respectful of house rules and routines so flexibility and mutual understanding is necessary from all involved.

During the weekend (at appropriate quiet moments):
Talk about school (but try not to let it become an inquisition). What is going especially good this semester? What isn't going so great? What classes are you taking next semester? Have you thought about living arrangements for next year?  

In this conversation, it may be apparent that your student has changed - many students seem a bit different after having lived away from home for a time which is very normal. However, if you sense a severe change or something seems really wrong, we encourage you to lovingly probe more deeply. Reassure your student that you can help, we at WMU can help, and that there's no need to struggle with problems alone. Your student may not be ready to share specific details, but just showing your love and support goes a long way to be reassuring. And if there are serious mental health concerns, thoughtfully consider whether it is in your student's best interest to continue the semester or if another solution needs to be explored.

Be prepared for change:
Your student is experiencing an increasingly open world in college and may express newly developing ideas surrounding lifestyle, religious, or political beliefs. WMU students are encouraged to respect and embrace diversity as they interact with people from all walks of life. They encounter new ideas and values that may differ from those they grew up with. Sometimes students struggle with reconciling these new and old ideals, so instead of letting this become an argument, it's a terrific opportunity to engage in a productive dialogue with your student.

The main ingredient to a successful holiday break is treating your student as an adult. Open and honest communication that emphasizes concern and interest, both before and during the break will help to establish mutually agreeable expectations and boundaries.  

And when you send them back to school, don't forget to give 'em a big hug!

October 2017 Question of the Month
Do you have enough information about WMU academic support services to advise your student when help is needed and how your student taps into  these services?
Number of Responses
Response Ratio
Absolutely yes! I have all the information I need.
131 12.8%
I know about some resources but could use more information.
310 30.3%
I'm not sure what's available or how my student finds information.
290 28.4%
I don't have a clue about what is available.
101 9.9%
My student is self-sufficient and doesn't need my help in finding resources.
145 14.2%
My student doesn't ask for my advice or assistance.
41 4.0%
1020 100%
WMU Family Engagement
Campus Location: 2415 Faunce Student Services
(269) 387-4820