Parents - Providence College Blogs

Let Us Give Thanks

Posted by: on November 17, 2017   |Comments (0)|Students

Thanksgiving is just around the corner, and I can’t wait. I have family members flying in from Chicago, some extra time to spend with friends, and, yes, lots of my favorite foods to enjoy — especially pumpkin pie.

As most of our students get ready to travel home for the holiday, I am sure that parents and families are looking forward to this time with a good amount of anticipation and excitement. It goes without saying that family gatherings are a big part of what Thanksgiving is all about.

Most of all though, Thanksgiving is a time to give thanks for the many blessings God has bestowed upon us. It also allows us to take pause and reflect on ways that we can continue to show our gratitude, not on just one day, but all through the year.

As director of the Providence College Parent Program, I send my warm thoughts and prayers to all PC families. I am grateful for your support, your insights, and, most of all, for allowing me to journey along with you as we promote and celebrate student success.

God Bless.

Jackie

Thanksgiving is just around the corner, and I can’t wait. I have family members flying in from Chicago, some extra time to spend with friends, and, yes, lots of my favorite foods to enjoy — especially pumpkin pie. As most of our students get ready to travel home for the holiday, I am sure that […]MORE

Something for Everyone

Posted by: on October 27, 2017   |Comments (0)|Students

During the last month or so, I have had a number of parents ask about food choices for their sons and daughters who are vegetarians. Although I am familiar with most of what our dining service offers, last week I decided to take a walk over to Raymond Dining Hall to chat with Jennifer Wells of Sodexo. It was a lovely fall day, so it also gave me an excuse to get out of my office and take in the beauty of our campus. I am happy to share with you some of what I learned from my visit with Jennifer.

  • For our vegan and vegetarian students, there is a self-serve hot entrée station called “Also at Classics” where items like quinoa primavera, teriyaki tofu, sofrito black beans, and nutrient-dense sides, such as roasted sweet potatoes and fresh steamed broccoli spears, are available.
  • At the cold vegan bar, students will find hummus, tabbouleh, bean salads, and other specialties like Moroccan roasted carrot salad. (I love their hummus!)
  • The menu at the “Vegetarian Toss” station offers options like quinoa bowls, crispy Buffalo tofu sliders, lettuce wraps, and falafel. Ingredients can be customized, and the dish is prepared fresh in just minutes.
  • Throughout the dining hall, a variety of options can be found on any given day. Flatbread pizzas, sandwiches, and soups are all included in the rotation of vegan and vegetarian choices. Of course, there is always the large salad bar that offers fresh produce along with whole grains, beans, and seasonal ingredients.

Parents, please let your sons and daughters know that if they have any questions or concerns about dining options they can make an appointment at pcdining@providence.edu to meet with Sarah Ereio, the dietitian. In the past, parents and students have informed me that she has been very helpful in working individually with students to help them make the most of their food choices.

Well that’s all for now. It’s time for lunch!

Jackie

During the last month or so, I have had a number of parents ask about food choices for their sons and daughters who are vegetarians. Although I am familiar with most of what our dining service offers, last week I decided to take a walk over to Raymond Dining Hall to chat with Jennifer Wells […]MORE

Up Close: Peter Palumbo — Director of Academic Advising

Posted by: on October 10, 2017   |Comments (0)|Students

This week I am pleased to reintroduce you to our “Up Close and Personal” feature. So, let’s meet with Peter Palumbo, director of academic advising, who joined the Providence College community in February, 2016.

Jackie

Can you tell us a little bit about yourself?
I am originally from West Long Branch, NJ., and did my undergraduate and graduate work in Communication Sciences at the University of Connecticut. Before coming to PC, I was the Assistant Director of Undergraduate Advising at Suffolk University, taught in the Communication Program at Suffolk, and, then, was the Director of Academic Advising at Dean College. I live in Charlestown, RI, with my wife, dog, and cats.

(Editor’s Note: Peter and I both work in the Office of the Dean of Undergraduate and Graduate Studies — and I am happy to know that he is a “cat person.”)

What can you tell us about your current role?
As director of academic advising, my primary goal is to enhance the advising experience for students and faculty. To achieve that goal, I am focusing on increasing the use of technology and other advising tools, as well as providing opportunities for students, with the support of their advisors, to take an increased role of ownership for their education.

What led you to become involved in the field of academic advising — what do you like most about your role?
I was drawn to academic advising because, based on my own experience as a first-generation college student, I am fascinated by the impact an academic advisor can have on a student’s development. I am passionate about being an advocate for students, and I relish the opportunity to collaborate with faculty and staff to continually improve the student experience at Providence College.

As director of academic advising, do you have any advice for parents as to how they can assist their students to make the most of their PC academic experience?
My advice for parents would be to have an open dialogue with your students about your expectations. Be sure to listen to what your students tell you and encourage them to become strong self-advocates, in order to enrich their experience at college. In academic advising, we always focus on helping students to cultivate transferable skills that they will be able to draw on throughout their life. As a parent you can reinforce this message by recommending to your sons and daughters that they make good use of academic and non-academic campus resources to help them in this process.

When you are not wearing your “advisor hat” what do you like to do for fun?
I love nature and take every opportunity to spend time at the beach, camping, and hiking. I enjoy traveling and am always looking for my next adventure.

This week I am pleased to reintroduce you to our “Up Close and Personal” feature. So, let’s meet with Peter Palumbo, director of academic advising, who joined the Providence College community in February, 2016. Jackie Can you tell us a little bit about yourself? I am originally from West Long Branch, NJ., and did my […]MORE

How Can I Help?

Posted by: on September 22, 2017   |Comments (0)|Students

Help, I need somebody
Help, not just anybody
Help, you know I need someone. Help!

The Beatles

“Help,” which was written by John Lennon (at Paul McCartney’s house), is my favorite of all Beatles songs. (“Here Comes the Sun” is a close second). To me, the lyrics to this song present a request for assistance, as well as an appreciation for the person providing the help. A powerful combination, for sure.

During the last few months, I have had lots of opportunities to speak with parents of our new incoming class, and the word “help” has been a constant in those conversations. Over and over again, parents have asked how they can help their students — to thrive in their new environment, to make the most of their academic experience, to find a balance between work and play.

Lately, I have spent some time reflecting on these recent discussions with families, and I have been thinking about this concept of “help.” Parents, remember as the song goes, “Help, not just anybody …”  Most often, it is you that your sons and daughters first reach out to because you know them and they know you far better than anyone else.

Yes, by all means, help your students. Listen, encourage, support, challenge, but try not to have your actions replace theirs. As a father of a senior said to me recently, “Over the last few years I’ve learned that the best way to help my daughter is to do more listening and less fixing.” I guess sometimes the best help we can offer is to step back a bit to allow someone else to step forward.

For my part, as director of the Parent Program, I will continue to look for ways “to help parents, to help students, to help themselves.”  And of course, listen to my Beatles music.

God Bless.

Jackie

Help, I need somebody Help, not just anybody Help, you know I need someone. Help! The Beatles “Help,” which was written by John Lennon (at Paul McCartney’s house), is my favorite of all Beatles songs. (“Here Comes the Sun” is a close second). To me, the lyrics to this song present a request for assistance, […]MORE

Some “Tidbits” For You To Share With Your Student

Posted by: on September 13, 2017   |Comments (0)|Students

With so many stressors, including hectic schedules, homesickness, and a full course load, it is important that students learn how to maintain a healthy lifestyle. Here are a few helpful tips to share with your student on how to choose meals in Raymond Hall Dining that can help reduce stress and increase energy. These tips come courtesy of Jenifer Wells from Sodexo.

  • Replace refined grains, like white bread and pasta, with whole grains – wheat pasta, bread, or a whole grain-composed salad available at the salad bar.
  • Fried foods, such as chicken nuggets, can be substituted with grilled chicken. Instead of French fries, try roasted vegetables like sweet potatoes from Also at Classics.
  • Really want dessert to finish off your meal? Skip the baked goods and ice cream, and try a piece of fresh fruit instead. Raymond offers a variety of fresh fruits daily for students to choose from.
  • Breakfast is the most important meal of the day, and there is no need to skip it because of time. Fill a to-go cup with low fat yogurt, granola, and fruit, or grab some oatmeal and fruit to take with you to class.

We encourage students to think outside the menu. By learning how to create meals for themselves and utilizing what is available in the dining hall, students not only take control over their meal plan, they find a delicious, healthy meal that meets their lifestyle.

Bon Appetit!

Jackie

With so many stressors, including hectic schedules, homesickness, and a full course load, it is important that students learn how to maintain a healthy lifestyle. Here are a few helpful tips to share with your student on how to choose meals in Raymond Hall Dining that can help reduce stress and increase energy. These tips […]MORE

Welcome (and Welcome Back)!!!

Posted by: on August 29, 2017   |Comments (0)|Students

A new academic year has begun and it brings with it excitement, anticipation, and even some anxiety for students and families. If you are a parent of a new first-year student, you have spent considerable time navigating the admission process with your son or daughter, learning as much as you can about Providence College, and dealing with all of the emotions that move-in day brings. But, as you know, the journey has just begun.

For parents of returning students, the journey continues. Some of you have sons and daughters who will be studying abroad, others may be engaging in new leadership and service activities, while other students are just beginning to find their passion and feel more comfortable about their chosen field of study.

In the Book of Ecclesiastes, we are reminded that there is a “TIME FOR EVERY SEASON under heaven.” As a new journey begins, we take the time to reflect on what has gone before and on what is yet to come. Please know that as director of the parent program, I feel privileged to be “traveling” along with all of you.

God Bless.

Jackie

A new academic year has begun and it brings with it excitement, anticipation, and even some anxiety for students and families. If you are a parent of a new first-year student, you have spent considerable time navigating the admission process with your son or daughter, learning as much as you can about Providence College, and […]MORE

Welcome to the Family!

Posted by: on June 20, 2017   |Comments (0)|Students

To parents and families of first year students and transfer students, welcome to the Providence College family! At PC, we know that family support is integral to student success. With that in mind, the College has a well developed Parent Program designed especially for you. As director of the program, I look forward to providing you with timely information about resources and support services to enable you to assist your student to navigate the PC experience. Because we know that when parents are informed, students benefit!

From time to time, during the academic year, I invite you to check out our Parent/Family Blog. Posts by students, parents, faculty, and administrators will provide you an opportunity to learn about the many facets of the College. It will also allow you to feel more connected to the College on many different levels.

I look forward to meeting many of you at events and programs during the academic year. Let the journey begin!

Sincerely,

Jackie

Jacqueline Kiernan MacKay

Director, PC Parent Program

To parents and families of first year students and transfer students, welcome to the Providence College family! At PC, we know that family support is integral to student success. With that in mind, the College has a well developed Parent Program designed especially for you. As director of the program, I look forward to providing […]MORE

So Much To Do — So Little Time!

Posted by: on April 20, 2017   |Comment (1)|Students

As the spring semester winds down, students are faced with deadlines for final papers and class projects, end of the year activities, and, of course, final exams. At the same time, “spring fever” can bring lots of distractions.

Our Personal Counseling Center recently provided students with some practical suggestions to help them stay centered and focused as the end of the semester approaches. I thought I’d pass these strategies along to parents — and perhaps you might encourage your sons and daughters to keep them in mind when they are feeling a bit overwhelmed. You might even pick up a couple of hints of what to do to help yourself feel less stressed during these busy days. I know I have!

  1. Give yourself time to be outside and take in the sun light. Sunlight will boost your mood – so soak it up!
  2. Combat procrastination by starting in on easy tasks first. Most of the time, all you need is to get going and the rest will flow.
  3. Schedule 15-minute breaks every hour of studying to take a walk outside, stretch, or connect with a friend.
  4. As the end of the semester approaches, work load increases as does the need to spend time with friends – honor both of these needs and schedule in time for studying and dates with friends. Remember, be realistic with how much time these activities really need.
  5. To stay healthy and happy in body, mind, and spirit, try to keep to a routine that includes regular sleep, nutrition, exercise, work, and social time. And, don’t forget the super important “me time.” Time alone can be rejuvenating and essential for those of us who are exceptionally busy and/or with introverted traits.
  6. When stressed out, take a minute to breath in and out fully. Remind yourself to return toward a compassionate place. Talk to yourself like you would a best friend. Allow judgment of yourself and of others to soften. Focus energies on gratitude and things that you can control.

To schedule an appointment with a counselor, students can call 401.865.2343 or stop in the office in the lower level of Bedford Hall next to the Student Health Center.

Take good care,

Jackie

As the spring semester winds down, students are faced with deadlines for final papers and class projects, end of the year activities, and, of course, final exams. At the same time, “spring fever” can bring lots of distractions. Our Personal Counseling Center recently provided students with some practical suggestions to help them stay centered and […]MORE

“THE BLACK & WHITE BALL” — A VERY SPECIAL STUDENT CENTENNIAL EVENT

Posted by: on April 13, 2017   |Comments (0)|Students

As the primary student event planners on campus, the Board of Programmers teamed up this year with members of Student Congress, Campus Ministry, Board of Multicultural Student Affairs, and the Friars Club to plan a signature student event for the Centennial year. They took inspiration from the grandeur of a “Night in Black & White” in naming their event “The Black & White Ball.”

I recently asked Daniel Pupke, executive vice president of the Board of Programmers and a member of a student sub-committee of the College’s Centennial Planning Committee, to share some of his thoughts about the ball which took place on February 17, 2017.

According to Dan, “Every aspect of this event exceeded our expectations. The Peterson Recreation Center was completely transformed and was absolutely beautiful. The food and beverage selections were incredible. The students were impressed by a timeline that we had arranged upon their entrance, as well as several photo opportunities, raffles, and centennial elements that we had arranged throughout the room. The band and the DJ kept the crowd going until the very end.”

All of the feedback we received was very positive. It was clear that the event had a tremendous impact on the student body. I don’t think the majority of the students grasped the scale of the event until they walked into the room. There is already some talk about making this an annual or semi-annual event, which would be the biggest honor we could ask for. In regard to the future,  we would like to see an increased focus on philanthropy and perhaps raise more money for the Angel Fund.”

Dan wanted to also thank so many from the College who provided support to students throughout the planning process — especially Sharon Hay, their advisor and director of student activities, Dr. Steven Sears, dean of students, and their respective staff.

I want to congratulate the students for all their time and energy that went into the planning of the “Black & White Ball.” I especially want to applaud their collaborative efforts as various organizations worked together to design and implement a truly memorable experience for all members of the student body.

God Bless.

Jackie

*Daniel Pupke is a member of the class of 2017 and is a finance and management double major from Malverne, NY

** The BOP students in the photo are, from left to right, Michael Gilmor ’17, Executive Treasurer, Taralynn Vecchio ’17, President, Daniel Pupke ’17, Executive Vice President, Monica Houghton ’17, Executive Secretary

As the primary student event planners on campus, the Board of Programmers teamed up this year with members of Student Congress, Campus Ministry, Board of Multicultural Student Affairs, and the Friars Club to plan a signature student event for the Centennial year. They took inspiration from the grandeur of a “Night in Black & White” […]MORE

MARCH … AND THE PRESSSURE IS ON

Posted by: on March 16, 2017   |Comments (0)|Students

Students came back from Spring Break and what a welcome they received — classes cancelled due to a snow storm! Hopefully, they didn’t bring all their winter clothes home and just left themselves with spring clothes and flip flops!

My experience tells me that March can be full of challenges for students. They need to get refocused and ready for mid-semester exams. They are also dealing with pre-registration concerns and housing decisions for next year. With so much going on, it is easy for students to feel more overwhelmed and less in-control.

Parents, this is a perfect time to remind your sons and daughters to make use of campus resources. The Personal Counseling Center and the Office of Academic Services can provide them with practical tips and strategies to help them prioritize their commitments and deal with stress. This month also might be a good  time to send your student a special care package from home.

That’s all for now, as we look forward to spring.

God Bless

Jackie

Students came back from Spring Break and what a welcome they received — classes cancelled due to a snow storm! Hopefully, they didn’t bring all their winter clothes home and just left themselves with spring clothes and flip flops! My experience tells me that March can be full of challenges for students. They need to […]MORE