Central College Parent Connections
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October 2014

Dear Central College families,

Fall has arrived in Pella! With Homecoming behind us, students now turn their attention to midterm exams, papers and projects. In the newsletter below you will find many academic resources to help them manage the workload and maximize their success. After Fall Break, students will begin registering for spring semester courses, a process that involves a meeting with their advisor. It is not too late to consider studying abroad in the spring, as deadlines have been extended until the end of October for Granada, Paris and Vienna.

The Internship Networking Fair is coming up in early November. Juniors and seniors are also strongly encouraged to attend one or more of the workshops offered in the Professional Development Series, such as resume and cover letter writing, interviewing strategies, managing your money and dining etiquette. Finally, if students are concerned about conflicts with a roommate, read on for advice about how you can best help and support them.

Do you need to update your email address or change your subscription for this newsletter? If so, you may do so anytime at http://www.central.edu/newsletters/. As always, the parent website can be a great resource for you in addition to emailing parentconnections@central.edu with questions you may have regarding your student’s life at Central.

Go Dutch!
The Office of Student Development

The Student Involvement Fair held in early September was a great opportunity to meet leaders of many clubs and organizations at Central.
A group of friends gathered around the photo booth at the CAB Homecoming Dance.

From the President

President's Blog
You are invited to read and contribute to President Mark Putnam's latest blog posts as our campus continues to explore issues important to our academic community. Visit Mark: my words to read more and participate in the dialogue. To subscribe to the blog, scroll down the sidebar on the right-hand side to locate the feature.


Students will have access to their midterm grades via WebAdvisor by October 22. Faculty are required to submit midterm grades for new students (first-year and transfers). Submitting midterm grades for sophomores, juniors and seniors is not required, though strongly encouraged. Midterm grades allow students to know where they stand in a class after the first half of the semester. If necessary, students are able to seek academic help with plenty of time to rehabilitate any grades prior to the end of the semester.

Getting Academic Help
Students completed their first round of exams and papers in the past few weeks. This can be a difficult time for students as they realize their grades may not be as high as expected and the workload is more than they anticipated. You can help your student be academically successful by guiding them to several campus resources:

  • All professors have office hours during which the professor is available for students to drop in with questions or talk about ways to improve. These office hours are listed on the student’s syllabus for that class.
  • The Tutoring & Writing Center offers individual tutoring for any subject. Some subjects are offered on a set schedule, which is located at https://my.central.edu/ under Academics, Academic Support Services. On-call tutors and writing tutors are also available. The Tutoring & Writing Center is located on the second floor of Geisler Library. Most tutoring happens in this location. If a student is unsure about tutoring hours, encourage him/her to go to the center to get more information.
  • Supplemental Instructors (SIs) host review sessions two to three times per week for classes in which a large number of students traditionally have struggled with the workload and material. The SI is a sophomore, junior or senior student who has successfully completed the class in the past. Ask your student if there is an SI for his/her classes and if your student has been attending the review sessions. Encourage regular attendance at these sessions if your student is not already taking advantage of this resource.
  • Academic Alert is a team consisting of the class deans, the registrar and the associate academic dean who meet weekly to identify students who are struggling academically and those who are performing exceptionally well. For the students who are struggling, the team will determine who would be the best person to contact the individual students in order to develop strategies to improve performance. If the students have demonstrated outstanding academic potential, the Academic Alert team is notified so they can help the student pursue honor projects, fellowships and graduate school opportunities. The Academic Alert team receives names of students from faculty or staff members who interact with the students.

Spring Registration
Spring 2015 course registration will begin on Monday, Oct. 27. Students need approval to register from their academic advisor and should schedule a face-to-face meeting with the advisor well in advance of their assigned registration day. Students with an outstanding financial obligation will not be able to access the online registration system.

Registration occurs by classification on the following dates and times:

  • Monday, Oct. 27 — fourth-year students (7:30 a.m.)
  • Monday, Nov. 3 — third-year students (7:30 a.m.)
  • Monday, Nov. 10 — second-year students (7:30 a.m.)
  • Monday, Nov. 17 — first-year students (7:30 a.m.)

Withdrawing from a Course
Students who need to withdraw from a course should do so on or before 5 p.m., Friday, Nov. 14 and will receive a ‘W’ (withdrawn) grade on the academic transcript. Students should speak with their academic advisor prior to finalizing a withdrawal. After November 14, students may not withdraw from any classes and will receive a final grade for the course. Students whose schedule drops below 12 credits (full-time status) will not be eligible for athletic participation until after the end of the fall semester. To withdraw from a course visit the Registrar’s Office located in Central Services, Central Hall 2nd floor.

Deadlines extended for spring study in Granada, Paris and Vienna
Motivated students can still submit applications for study in one of Central outstanding programs in Granada, Paris or Vienna. Applications should be complete by October 31, 2014, for study in spring 2015.

Internship Networking Fair
Meet with more than 40 employers who are seeking spring semester and summer interns! Some are announcing jobs as well! Thursday, Nov. 6, 11 a.m.–1:30 p.m., Graham Banquet Hall. Ask about the skills they are seeking, the kinds of projects you would be working on and how to apply!

Meet the Pros in STEM Careers
All students interested in careers in Science, Technology, Engineering or Mathematics should attend this event featuring a panel of nine alumni from a cross-section of career fields, Thursday Oct. 30, 11 a.m. – 12:20 p.m., Vermeer Science Center 180.

Upcoming Workshops
Recommended for all juniors and seniors, the Professional Development Series continues with the following workshops:

  • Job Search Overview: Thursday, Oct. 23, 11 a.m., van Emmerik studio, Maytag
  • Résumé/Cover Letter Writing: Tuesday, Oct. 28, 11:30 a.m., van Emmerik Studio
  • Interviewing Strategies: Thursday, Nov. 6, 11 a.m., van Emmerik Studio;
  • Making Cents of Money: Monday, Nov. 10, 6:30 p.m., Vermeer Science Center 241.
  • Dining Etiquette: Tuesday, Nov. 11, 5:45-8 p.m., President’s Dining Room;
Workshops are offered again during spring semester. For a full schedule of workshops, internships and job listings, visit http://www.central.edu/career/.

The Dutch Brigade led the student section while cheering on the football team at the first home game of the year, which was also the first night game in many years.
The winning team of the Homecoming HeMan Volleyball Tournament.

Residence Life Update

College Break Information
Residence areas remain open for all college breaks except holiday/semester break. During winter break, students must vacate their rooms by 5 p.m. Friday, December 19, until noon Sunday, January 18. Students who participate on official winter athletic teams will receive additional information regarding their housing. Residence areas are open during Thanksgiving break; however, meal options are limited.

Roommate Conflicts
Throughout your student’s time living in Central’s residence halls, they may express some frustration or concern about their roommate. This is a very common phenomenon for students as college is the first time they may be sharing a space with another person. Our Residence Life staff is trained to help students alleviate and resolve roommate conflicts. However, as you are likely the first to hear news of your student’s roommate concerns, here are some ways you can partner with us in making your student’s living situation optimal:

  • Remind your student that s/he and the roommate do not need to be best friends in order to live together. Many students think they have to be best friends with their roommate in order to cohabitate peacefully. This is not true.
  • Ask your student, “Have you talked with your roommate?” This is the simplest solution but most often overlooked. If you call a residence life staff member about your student’s roommate conflict, the initial question you will be asked is, “Has your student talked with his/her roommate?” If the answer is no, this is the place to start.
  • Ask your student, “Have you talked with your RA?” Resident advisors (RAs) are trained to provide strategies for roommates to discuss their issues and concerns in a safe, productive way. If your student is nervous about speaking with his/her roommate, ask your student to contact their RA for ideas regarding how to approach the situation.
  • If all of the above strategies have been tried and the conflict persists, the student’s next step would be to see his/her area coordinator. The area coordinator is a live-in, professional staff member and is able to offer other suggestions and solutions for relieving the conflict.
  • Listen to your student, but fight the urge to solve his/her problem on your own. This can be very difficult as your natural instinct is to protect him/her. Allowing students to confront their problems on their own will strengthen their ability to resolve conflict and build upon their communication skills. You can help by reminding your student of the steps listed above and following up with your student to see if s/he has taken initiative. 

Airport and Greyhound Shuttle
The Office of Student Involvement offers a $5 shuttle to the Des Moines Int’l Airport, Des Moines Greyhound station and Des Moines Amtrak station for college breaks. The shuttle does NOT run to stations or airports in any other location. If you make travel plans for your student that coincide with the shuttle schedule listed below, please ask your student to reserve a shuttle spot for her/himself at least three days prior to the date s/he wishes to ride. Students should make this reservation themselves as they know best when they are done with classes, exams or if they have already arranged friends to drive them.

To reserve a spot on any of the shuttles available this year, please advise students to visit the Student Activities page on myCentral to submit their information via the online form on that page. Also remind them that reservations should be submitted approximately three business days prior to the date of the shuttle. The shuttle schedule for 2014-15 is as follows:

Thanksgiving Break

Wednesday, Nov. 26 - Depart Pella 11 a.m. or 2 p.m. or 5 p.m.
Sunday, Nov. 30 - Depart DSM Airport 1 p.m. or 6 p.m.

Winter/Semester Break

Thursday, Dec. 18 – Depart Pella 11 a.m. or 2 p.m.
Friday, Dec. 19 – Depart Pella 8 a.m. or 11 a.m.
Sunday, Jan. 18, 2015 – Depart DSM Airport 1 p.m. or 6 p.m.

Spring Break

Friday, March 13 – Depart Pella 11 a.m. or 2 p.m.
Sunday, March 22 – Depart DSM Airport 1 p.m. or 6 p.m.

Easter Break

Thursday, April 2 – Depart Pella 11 a.m. or 2 p.m.
Monday, April 6 – Depart DSM Airport 6 p.m.

End of School Year

Thursday, May 14 - Depart Pella 3 p.m.
Friday, May 15 - Depart DSM Airport 8 a.m. or 11 a.m.

*The shuttle will also drop off/pick up students at the Des Moines Greyhound Bus Terminal or Des Moines Amtrak Station if requested at the time of reservation.

The Maytag Student Center was officially dedicated on September 18 with a ribbon cutting ceremony, activities for students and cake!
The combined team of first and second year students who won the
Homecoming Powderpuff Football Tournament.

Get Involved

Flying Pans Steel Drums Concert
The Flying Pans Steel Drums concert, “Captain Pan,” will take place on Friday, October 31 and Saturday, November 1 at 7:30 p.m. and Sunday, November 2 at 4 p.m. in Douwstra Auditorium. Enjoy the Flying Pans as they perform an original show intertwined with drums, lights and special effects, and dress up for the costume contest! Further information and tickets can be purchased at www.central.edu/finearts or by calling 641-628-7520.

Health and Wellness

Check-Out the New Maytag Fitness and Wellness Center
The Maytag Student Center lower level has been transformed from a lounge with TVs and pool table to a Wellness Center. This center includes a large fitness area with a variety of walking, rowing, weight and cardio machines, a Wellness Education Center that will have a variety of paper and online resources, and a Peer Educator’s/Wellness Educator office. Students and employees are welcomed and encouraged to utilize all aspects of the new Wellness Center.

Tips for Avoiding the Flu
College students living on campus are at a heightened risk for catching the flu because of the large number of people living in close quarters. Central’s Wellness Educators encourage everyone to follow the three steps of prevention and tips for protecting yourself against the flu offered from the Centers for Disease Control.

  1. Get a flu vaccine.
  2. If you get the flu, treat it early. Antiviral drugs are available that can treat flu.
  3. Prevention tips:
    • Try to avoid close contact with sick people.
    • Wash hands frequently. Avoid touching your eyes, nose and mouth.
    • Get good rest. (College students often struggle with this.)
    • Eat well-balanced meals.
    • Clean and disinfect your residence hall room on a regular basis. Wipe down surfaces with disinfectant.
    • Use alcohol-based hand sanitizers.
    • Cough and sneeze into a tissue or your sleeve if a tissue is not available.
    • If you have flu-like symptoms, stay home and rest.

Students displaying these symptoms should be encouraged to remain in their rooms or at home. Students should communicate directly with their faculty members prior to class to inform their professors that they are ill. Please remind your son/daughter to call Pella Regional Health Center-Central Clinic to make an appointment if the initial symptoms get worse or persist. Students who visit PRHC-Central Clinic in the early signs of illness tend to recover faster than students who wait until they are very ill. You can also help by providing your student with basic supplies to provide relief from the common cold or other illnesses common in the winter.

Student Health 101
Student Health 101 is a monthly newsletter sent to all students covering common college topics and transitions. Parent Perspective, a newsletter by the creators of Student Health 101, is meant to inform family members of the many issues college students face so they are better equipped to offer perspective and help guide students to healthy ways of coping with various situations. October’s parent issue of Student 101 is found at http://readsh101.com/1014/central-pp.html, covering topics including:

  • Academic Hangover: How Heavy Drinking Affects Brainpower
  • All-In-One Workouts: How to Build Strength, Stamina & Flexibility Anywhere
  • The Job Prob: Forecasting Your Future in the Job Market
  • The Pursuit of Perfection: What is the Cost of Your High Standards?

Popular campus websites

Academics http://www.central.edu/academics
Admission http://www.central.edu
Alumni http://www.central.edu/alumni
Athletics http://www.central.edu/athletics
Bookstore http://central.textbookx.com/
Career Center http://www.central.edu/career
Conference Services http://www.central.edu/event-planners
Dining Services http://departments.central.edu/diningservices
Facilities Management http://www.central.edu/facilities
Fine arts http://www.central.edu/fine-arts
Online giving http://www.central.edu/makeagift
Registrar http://departments.central.edu/registrar/
Study abroad http://www.central.edu/abroad

The Parent Connections newsletter is created by the Office of Student Development. The information presented is based on expert advice from professional staff at Central College and those working in higher education beyond Central. If there are topics you would like to see addressed in the newsletter, please email parentconnections@central.edu.

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Central College812 University
Pella, Iowa 50219