Parent & Family Newsletter: Tips for a successful fall break, supporting student self-exploration, campus winter weather practices, and more.
Parents and Family Newsletter

Success on Campus 

Building on campus, landscape.

Musing about Midterms

Midterm season is upon us — reality check time! Students need to find their own way of dealing with stress, but families can provide guidance and support. This Collegiate Parent article provides tips..

Changing Family Dynamics and Tips For a Successful Fall Break

Whether fall break means returning home for a few days, or staying on campus, it’s a great time for students to take inventory, recharge, and prepare for the next chunk of the semester.

Encouraging Active Self-Reflection and Exploration

Pausing to think about academic, co-curricular, and career development choices will position your student to make the most of their time at Colgate — and to find a meaningful path forward.

How to Support A College-Age Child Who Is Exploring Their Sexuality

When it comes to their sexuality or gender identity, students need all the support they can get. Colgate’s director of the Office of LGBTQ+ Initiatives offers tips for parents.

Fraternity and Sorority Membership: Expectations and Talking Points

Membership in a fraternity or sorority comes with specific training requirements, as well as support. Colgate’s director of Fraternity and Sorority advising discusses the new member experience and shares conversation pointers for family members.


Campus Updates

Building on campus, landscape.

ALANA Cultural Center Celebrates Unity In Diversity
Recent events highlight campus hub for multicultural exploration, sense of belonging initiatives, social justice education, multicultural student connections, and campus community building.

Building on campus, landscape.

When Winter Weather Strikes
Tips from our Environmental Health and Safety team about Colgate’s practices and how students can embrace all that Mother Nature provides our campus.

Public Health: Mid-term Recess COVID-19 Testing
Prior to mid-term recess (Oct. 9–12, 2021), students were offered pre-departure COVID-19 rapid testing Oct. 6–8 on campus and notified that a positive result may preclude the use of public transportation during the break. Following fall break, students may access optional worried-and-well PCR testing, Wednesday–Friday, October 13–15, between 10 a.m. and 2 p.m. by appointment. As always, students with symptoms that are consistent with COVID-19 should not attend class or events and should call Student Health Services (315-228-7750) for further medical advice.

Fire Safety Inspections
Students have been notified that the NYS Office of Fire Prevention and Control is conducting annual fire/life safety inspections at all University-owned properties, including residence halls, Oct. 6–30. In preparation, the fire safety department asks all students to review their spaces for code compliance. Common violations have included covered smoke detectors, evidence of smoking indoors, use of candles, obstructed sprinkler heads, items on sprinkler pipes, use of extension cords without circuit breaker/overload protection, propped fire doors, blocked exits, and improper storage of flammables (e.g. propane tanks).

Semester-Break Bus Transportation
For each of the academic-year recesses (fall mid-term, winter, and spring break), Megabus offers transit from campus to Port Authority in New York City. My Bus Home provides motor coach service to various areas in the mid-Atlantic and New England regions. Learn more on the Maps & Travel page.


Important To-Dos and Dates

  • Flu Shot Clinics
  • Office of Student Accounts
    • Spring 2022 course registration is scheduled for the week of November 1. Financial holds will prevent participation in this registration process.
    • Spring 2022 term billing notifications will be shared the first week of December, with balances due in mid-January.
  • Student Residences and Dining Halls Schedule
    • Closed to All Students for Winter Break, December 18, 2021, 12:00 p.m.–January 21
    • Open to All Students for Spring 2022 Semester, January 22, 2022
    • Closed to All Students Except Seniors May 14, 2022, 12:00 p.m.
    • Closed to All Seniors and Guests, May 22, 2022, 8:00 p.m.
  • 2021–22 Academic Calendar


Family Weekend 2021
October 22–24, 2021

We are so pleased to welcome families to campus for a safe and healthy Family Weekend. Given the COVID-19 pandemic, some aspects of our traditional weekend will run a bit differently than in the past. Registration and COVID-19 documentation is required. Please review the Family Weekend page so that you can be prepared for your eagerly awaited visit!


Your Input Needed

Colgate University is proud to be part of College Parents Speak Out, a national research study to understand the needs and experiences of families during the COVID-19 pandemic. This survey will help us and other programs like ours understand your experience and consider how we can better serve parents and families as they support their college students. We realize you may be dealing with many challenges right now, and we don’t want to add a burden. But if you have a few minutes to share your thoughts and views in this online survey, we’ll be grateful. And you’ll be representing Colgate in the national picture.

The online survey takes about 15 minutes to complete. In order to be included, you’ll need to complete the survey by November 5, 2021. After completing the survey, you can choose to be entered into a drawing to win one of five $100 gift cards. Your responses will be kept private and will not affect your relationship with Colgate. Click here to get started:

Take Survey

Advice from Family Members
We asked current parents, What is one piece of advice you would share with a parent/guardian of an incoming first-year or transfer student? Their helpful responses ranged from practical to metaphorical.


How to reach us
Rebecca Downing
Senior Director, Communications and Parent Initiatives

Parent and family resources

For urgent concerns
→ Concern about a student’s well-being
→ Campus safety Emergency: 1-315-228-7333

Parents and Family Newsletter

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