December 2010 Parent E-Newsletter
• Greetings from the Parent Council - Home for the Holidays!
• Parent Council Tips – Making Adjustments during Christmas Break
• Important Dates
• Student Care Groups
• Offices of Strengths and Vocation – Check out our new website
• Important Student Financial Information
• Shuttle Schedule - Airport and Train Station
• Description of an RA and Their Selection Process?
• Sweet Celebration Treat! Remember Your Student on Finals Week!
Christmas Break is almost here again. I can attest that my students are really looking forward to coming home, having a private room and enjoying home cooked meals. Speaking as a parent, it is gratifying to know that we have been missed and to feel appreciated. If you have a freshman returning home this Christmas Break, you may observe some changes in their behavior as well as eating and sleeping patterns.
The Parent Council will be sharing with you a few tips that will make the transition smooth and peaceful. The most surprising thing you will discover is that their excitement in coming home will surface again when it is time to return to PLNU where they will see friends and start their classes.
We wish all of you a wonderful holiday season as we celebrate the birth of our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ.
Director of Parent Connection
Greetings from Parent Council - Home for the Holidays!
My military deployments taught me lessons that can be applied to enhance the satisfaction of our students when they are home for the holidays. Once when I was deployed our children reminded my wife to conduct the family advent candle-lighting ceremony. This was our family’s way of keeping the focus on Jesus as we prepared for Christmas. We weren’t aware that this practice was important to them. We also discovered certain dishes that Daddy made were expected even when Daddy wasn’t there. Both of these examples speak of the importance of family holiday traditions.
Traditions for the holidays can provide a familiarity and sense of security for our young adults when much of their world is changing. After so much “newness” during their first semester, students have a real need to come home and find some things haven’t changed. Parents should be cautious about too much change at home now that our children are “grown” and in college. Often parents may not be aware that a tradition is important until it is not practiced. So, listen carefully to hear what holiday traditions are important to your returning student. The character Tevye from “Fiddler on the Roof,”aptly describes the value of tradition when he said that tradition helps families keep their balance. Let us help our students keep their balance during a happy and merry Christmas Break.
Ollis and Almena Mozon
Parent Council Members
Parent Council Tips – Making Adjustments During Christmas Break
Members of the Parent Council also offer the following tips when our young adults are home for Christmas Break:
1. Be prepared for your young adult to say or do things that are totally “off-the-wall” or out of character. This is their attempt to test the waters of adulthood. Remember as parents that have raised them with proper values for a number of years, the four months they have been away at school will not erase your efforts. Rather try to enjoy the new relationship with this young adult that has returned home.
2. Acknowledge to your young adult that you do understand that they have been living on their own, making their own decisions and are feeling quite independent and that you are ready to embrace the steps they are taking into adulthood. However, there are still rules of the house and common courtesies to be shown to other members of the family while they are home for a visit! They are expected to clean their room, make their beds and if they go out with friends, to let you as parents know when they'll be home.
3. The student’s return to the home environment is a very important topic as parents will undoubtedly experience a transition and need to be prepared. As parents, remember that your students have been evolving over these past few months and are in the process of becoming young men and women God is preparing them to be. They need to be embraced as special young adults. They usually respond favorably when treated as adults rather than children who no longer fit into a childhood mold. By embracing the changes we are embracing the future rather than the past. "And Mary pondered these things in her heart."
4. Try to listen to them and avoid instructing them. By respecting them as young adults you are teaching them to respect you as parents as well as others. There should be fewer battles as you embrace the new relationship. While there are no curfews, they should be respectful in letting you know with whom and where they are going out and when you can expect them to be home. Just as parents share their plans with the household, so should your student share their plans. This is mutual respect.
Classes End - December 10
Final Examinations - December 13-17
Residence Halls Close (Noon) - December 18
Final Grades Deadline - December 31
Student Care Groups
The purpose of this group is to identify, as early as possible, students who are at risk for prematurely terminating their studies at PLNU. The group, composed of Student Development professionals, develops a personalized intervention for each student brought to its attention.
If you are concerned about a student, you may bring the student to the attention of the group's chairperson, Dr. Jeffrey Carr, via the use of campus e-mail (firstname.lastname@example.org).
When considering a referral, please consider the following suggested referral criteria:
A) Student is experiencing a significant disruption/crisis in a single major area of functioning (academic, social, spiritual, physical, or emotional)
B) Student is experiencing multiple disruptions which appear to significantly impair the student's functioning
How does the Student Care Group actually work?
When a student is brought to our attention, the group assigns a point person to make personal contact. The point person diplomatically shares that s/he has learned that the student is struggling in some way. The point person makes every effort to connect the student with appropriate on or off campus resources and to provide personal support. Often the point person has a natural point of connection with the student, such as a Resident Director in the same residence hall as the student. This is not always the case. If there is no one on the committee that has a direct connection with the student, which most often happens with a Commuter Student, the student receives a personal note from Dr. Carr offering to meet with the student and provide assistance and support.
Should I tell a student that I am referring him/her to the Student Care Group?
It's entirely up to the referring party to disclose a referral to a student. There may be situations in which a professor might even ask a student's permission to make a referral and other situations in which a referral might be made without consulting the student. If you wish to remain anonymous, indicate that desire in your referral e-mail.
What about a student’s confidentiality?
The Student Care Group maintains all requirements stipulated by FERPA and HIPPA guidelines applicable to PLNU. It is probably best to characterize the services of the Student Care Group as "private" rather than "confidential." Members of the Student Care Group are very sensitive to privacy concerns. In our first semester of functioning (Spring ‘04), we found students to be highly receptive to contact. Often, a student expressed relief that someone noticed and was concerned about his/her challenges. In addition, the recent final review document from the Virginia Tech tragedy stated “…frustration about privacy laws stems from lack of understanding. When seen clearly, the privacy laws contain many provisions that allow for information sharing where necessary.”
Offices of Strengths and Vocation - Check Out Our New Website!
Check out OSV’s new website. We have great “How to” videos, student resources, event information, and much more.
You can also join us on Facebook and get the latest updates and pictures from events! All you need to do is say you like us!
Important Student Financial Information
Spring 2011 Statement of Account
The first bill for next semester will be sent out this week. If your student has registered for spring, you should receive a statement of account by mail within the next week. All future bills for the spring semester will be available electronically, through the student and parent portals. Payment for Spring 2011 is due January 4, 2011. Amounts showing as Pending aid will be considered payment, even if they haven’t yet posted. (Financial aid will not be posted for the spring semester until January 24th. Credit balances created by financial aid cannot be accessed until after that date, although a book advance of up to $400 can be granted during the first week of school provided that such a credit will exist when aid is posted.)
If your student has provided you with financial information releases, you will receive a postcard each month that a bill is generated, to let you know that the bill is available to be viewed online through your parent portal. You can choose to receive notification by email instead, or you can choose to not be notified at all, if someone else is handling the account. Please be sure that we have a valid email address on file for you if you choose to be notified by email.
Viewing Your Bill Online
To view your student’s bill online and/or to change your bill notification preferences, simply log in to your portal at my.pointloma.edu and click on PARENTS at the top of the page. Then click on “Financial Services” in the column on the left side of the webpage and click on “Statement of Account.” At the top of the page is a link entitled “Change My Bill Notification Preferences.” Below that, you will see an account summary for any student who has given you financial permission.
To see the most recent detailed statement, click on “View Bills.” You will see a list of all Official School Statements and a list of any statements that have been generated by you or by your student.
You also have the ability to generate your own online statement at any time in order to see up-to-the-minute posted transactions. NOTE: You will need a PDF viewer to view the statement. You likely already have this on your computer, but you will be able to install a free Adobe Reader from our website if necessary. If you have any difficulties in viewing the statement, please contact our support staff at 619-849-7378 or email@example.com.
If your student has not registered for spring due to a balance owing for fall, s/he is in danger of being de-enrolled from PLNU at the end of this semester. Please contact our office as soon as possible to let us know how you plan to resolve the balance; we can help you work through your options. If you haven’t already, you may want to apply for a Parent PLUS loan at www.studentloans.gov, or have your student apply for an Alternative loan with a co-signer at www.elmselect.com .
Tuition Management Systems
If you have a spring monthly payment contract set up with Tuition Management Systems (TMS), please compare the amount of your contract to the amount owing on your spring statement of account. If you need to make any adjustments, please contact TMS directly at http://www.afford.com/ptloma or 888-285-3052. TMS does not have access to your PLNU account balance, but they can help you adjust the amount of your contract based on information you provide to them from your statement of account. You’ll want to be sure to keep an eye on your PLNU statement of account, in case there are any changes to registration or any additional charges added to the account (such as fines).
Chapel and Dorm Fees
Chapel and dorm fines are often posted to student accounts after the end of a semester, (after the last chapel service and after students have left the dorms for the holidays). This means that you would not see the fines on your most recent statement of account or on the initial spring statement. You will be able to see these fines if you generate an online statement in early January.
1098-T Tax Forms
1098-T tax forms will be made available online (through the student portal) by the end of January. PLNU has partnered with ECSI to provide you with your 1098-T tax forms. ECSI has been providing other services to PLNU for many years, and is a trusted partner.
To access the 1098-T, have your student follow these steps, beginning in February:
1. Log into your my.pointloma.edu account.
2. Click on the “Students” tab.
3. Click on “Financial Services”
4. On the left hand side navigation bar, click on “1098-T”
5. The instructions will direct you to your 1098-T forms at ECSI’s website.
Our department is now on Facebook! Check out our page at PLNU Student Financial Services from the search bar. Be sure to ‘Like’ us in order to stay up to date with the latest about what’s happening with us.
Our offices will be closed December 24th through January 3rd for the Holiday Season. The online services will be available for making payments during this time. Any checks sent through the mail will be processed when we reopen on January 4th.
If you have any questions regarding your student’s statement of account, please feel free to contact the Student Financial Services Office at 619.849.2538 Monday through Thursday, 8:30 a.m.-5:00 p.m. or 8:30 a.m.-4:30 p.m. on Friday. You can also email us at firstname.lastname@example.org. We are here to serve you!
HAVE A WONDERFUL CHRISTMAS SEASON!!
Shuttle Schedule – Airport and Train Station
Christmas Break (December 18, 2010 – January 9, 2011)
As you make plans for Christmas break, please know that the residence halls are closed during Christmas Break from 12:00 p.m. on Saturday, 12/18 until 12:00 p.m. on Saturday 1/8.
Leaving Point Loma:
The Shuttle will leave outside the Prescott Prayer Chapel each hour, on the hour.
It will stop at the airport and then proceed to the train station before heading back to campus.
Returning to Point Loma:
When returning, please call the driver below to notify him of your location (Airport or Train Station). He will give you an approximate pick-up time. A few minutes before this time, please stand at the curb and prepare to flag down the driver.
Shuttle Number: (619) 279-9810
Thuok Bol, Driver: (619) 459-7125
Service Times During Christmas Break
Thursday, December 16 from 9 a.m. – 9 p.m.
Friday, December 17 from 9 a.m. – 9 p.m.
Saturday, December 18 from 5 a.m. – 12 p.m.
*Halls close at 12 noon on Saturday
Saturday, January 8 from 12 p.m. – 10 p.m.
*Halls open at 12 noon on Saturday
Sunday, January 9 from 10 a.m. – 10 p.m.
If you need a shuttle to the airport or train station outside of the above times, you will need to make your own arrangements. PLNU does not endorse the following companies, but provides them for your convenience:
San Diego MTS: www.sdcommute.com
Super Shuttle: (800) BLUEVAN
Cloud 9 Shuttle: (800) 9SHUTTLE
Yellow Cab: (619) 444-4444
Description of an RA and the Selection Process
The Resident Assistant (RA) selection process has begun for the 2011-2012 school year. RAs at PLNU serve an important role in the lives of the students around them by welcoming and supporting students, planning events, and creating an environment that helps students succeed.
As compensation, RAs receive a scholarship that covers the cost of room and board. The selection process includes an application and short essay response, a group interview process with other applicants, and finally an individual interview with two Resident Directors. Every year Residential Life receives far more applications from students who want to be an RA than the number of positions that are actually available. This ensures that the RA selection process is very competitive.
If your student is interested in learning more about being an RA have them attend the informational meeting on January 12, 2011 in Nicholson Dining Room at 7 p.m. Also, there will be a time for students to ask questions or simply talk about the position with the Resident Directors after this meeting. This is always a great chance for students to get to know the RDs that they will be working with, as well as learn more about the position.
All applications are due to the office of Residential Life on the 3rd floor of Nicholson Commons by 4:00 pm on Friday, January 21.
If you have any questions about the process please email RAselection@pointloma.edu. We are excited to get to know your students better as we build the Res Life team for the coming year.
Send a Celebration Treat! Remember Your Student on Finals Week!
Susan Brownlee, President of PLNU San Diego Women’s Auxiliary
Point Loma Nazarene University Women’s Auxiliary
With finals just around the corner, why not send your student a Sweet Treat to boost their spirits while they are studying? For a $25 donation, the Women’s Auxiliary of PLNU will lovingly bake homemade cakes, cookies or brownies and have them delivered right to your student’s residence hall! We have even added an option for gluten-free treats by Sweet Willo May’s Bakery. You can order and pay online at www.pointloma.edu/cake
Proceeds from this fundraiser are being used to replace the remaining 150 aging library chairs. Two weeks advanced notice is appreciated.