Monday, September 30, 2019

Seems Like Yesterday ....

A new Hofstra parent shares her experience when she said goodbye to her first son as he went away to college:

Here is Stephanie Kepke's bio:

An award-winning author and blogger, Stephanie Kepke's second grade teacher told her she should be a writer, and she hasn't wavered in her path since. In her past life, before kids, Stephanie was an arts reporter and music journalist. She lives on Long Island with her family, which includes two slightly crazy rescue dogs (one of whom is three-legged). Stephanie's books include the novel, Goddess of Suburbia; the book of essays, Boys, Dogs and Chaos; and the novellas, A New Life and You & Me

Wednesday, April 3, 2019

Call for Chance Auction Donations

Hello Hofstra Parents!  If you have been following the Parent Council Minutes of the past meetings, you will know that we are starting early to request donations for an item, gift certificate or service of any size to our upcoming Chance Auction during Hofstra’s Fall Festival: Alumni, Student and Family Weekend on September 27 -28.   Cash donations of any value are also greatly appreciated. All contributions are tax-deductible to the extent allowed by law. Hofstra University is a nonprofit 501(c)(3) organization. 

At our last Parent Council meeting we learned that the Chance Auction Tickets will be sold on Friday and Saturday, September 27 and 28 with the drawing to take place on Saturday, September 28, 2019.  Branka Kristic, Director of Student and Family Programs and Francine Berman, Chance Auction Chair explained by donating an item, gift cards, or making a cash donation, you are supporting our Emergency Student Fund, as well as help raise seed money for the following year Hofstra Fall Festival budget.  The Fall Festival is run by the Hofstra University Office of Student and Family Programs. Without our parents supporting the Chance Auction, the charge for this event would be fully passed on to those in attendance.  The money set aside helps with Guest Speakers, as well as the Saturday Family Breakfast and Friday Reception dinner.  Your little gift card or item will help 5,000 plus people the following year enjoy the Festival, as well as fund the Student Emergency Fund.   We are so excited to announce that we have received Family Disney Hopper Passes, as well as the use of a Condo in Salt Lake City, Utah for two days for our chance auction, as well as many local business gift cards.

If you are interested in donating an item or have access to a business, vendor or tickets to an event please contact to get a link to our donation letter and form. Please note that the legal department says the bottom of the donation form must be filled out stating that you or a business are contributing, item(s) or service(s) described to Hofstra Parent Council Chance Auction. Submitting this form agrees to provide the items(s) or service(s) to the Hofstra University Office of Parent and Family Programs.  Francine and the entire Parent Council Executive Board thank everyone in advance who can contribute to the Chance Auction in any way possible.

For more information on how to donate to Chance Auction, please visit:

Catherine Fisher
HU Parent Council

Tuesday, March 5, 2019

Parent Council Meeting Recap: Guest Speaker: Dr. John Guthman, Executive Director of Student Health and Counseling Center

25 February 2019

Hofstra’s Parent Council had the opportunity to hear from Guest Speaker, Dr. John Guthman, Executive Director of Student Health and Counseling Center. 

Below are notes from the meeting:

Branka Kristic, Director of Parent and Family Programs, introduced our Parent Council to Dr. John Guthman, Executive Director of Hofstra University's Student Health and Counseling Center (SHACC).  Dr. Guthman explained how Hofstra supports all students while emphasizing support for students with anxiety, depression, and other mental/medical health concerns. SHACC is structured as an integrated medical and counselling support for all Hofstra students. Students in need of any medical attention may make an appointment with SHACC to see nurse practitioners, psychologists, or other professional staff. SHACC also offers group counseling to students to come together to discuss common concerns once a week. If students are in need of immediate mental health support after hours, they can contact the Office of Public Safety who can put them in touch with our on-call counselors.

Dr. Guthman reviewed statistics regarding mental health among college students. In 2018, depression was the number one mental health concern in college students, followed closely by anxiety. He further explained the impact parents often have on students' lack of resilience in their well-meaning attempts to shield their students from failure. He explained the importance of parents letting students struggle (and sometimes fumble!) in order to learn to tolerate failure and its resulting anxiety. 

SHACC also provides preventative measures against harassment across campus. All incoming students at New Student Orientation receive information about the services SHACC provides, as well Title IX and bystander intervention training.  All club executive board members, Resident Student Safety, and student government groups are required to take additional Title IX and bystander training. Additional preventative measures include optional programming such as mental health screening days several times per year, as well as our CARES program. As part of our CARES program, administrators, faculty, and staff meet bi-monthly to communicate concerns about students who might need extra support. Support staff determine which offices and administrators will provide support to each student and concerns are re-addressed at follow-up meetings. 

Hofstra University conforms to HIPAA standards: if a student is 18 or older, they do not have to inform their family, staff, or faculty in order to receive SHACC services. Students younger than 18 do require parental consent to attend individual psychological counseling. Additionally, students are also advised on the limits of confidentiality under Hofstra Title IX rules, as only chaplains, counselors, and medical staff do not have to report harassment to the Title IX office.  

Support Staff Contact Information:
Student Health and Counseling Center: 516-463-6745
(After SHACC is closed, on-call counselors can be reached by contacting Public Safety at 516-463-6789)
Branka Kristic, Director of Parent and Family Programs: 516-463-4698 or
Allison Vernance, Title IX Officer: 516-463-5841 or
Submitted by Susan Heilig, Communications Chair

Monday, January 28, 2019

Parent Council Chatter - Stay Virtually Connected


Hello fellow Hofstra parents!  One of the things I hear often when speaking with you is that we don't know what's going on at Hofstra with our students.  My student doesn't tell me anything!  As a parent of a third-year, I researched online how Hofstra communicates. Be sure to check out this blog and get connected by signing up to receive the Hofstra Family Link e-Newsletter. (Sign up here.
Additionally, you may want to get informed on social media! On Facebook, we have @HofstraU - Hofstra University, @HofstraParents - Hofstra Parents, @HofstraBookstore - Hofstra University Bookstore, and many more accounts for students where you can see posts with up-to-date information and events. 
On Twitter, you can follow @HofstraU, @HofstraParents, @HULconnect (library hours and updates), @Hofstracareer (The Career Center), @HofstraRec (Hofstra Recreation), and @HofstraPride (Hofstra University Pride Athletics). 
Checking out these sites that will give you a sense of your student's interests, what is going on at Hofstra, and future topics for discussion with them.
Hope this helps you keep in the know and get back in touch with your students! 
Many thanks to the parents who attend the Parent Council meetings in person, online, and via telephone!  It's wonderful to get involved through Parent Council.

Stay well!

Susan Heilig
Secretary, Hofstra Parent Council

Wednesday, January 23, 2019

Does your student have a maintenance problem in their residence hall?

Here at Hofstra, the Plant and Campus Operations department works hard to keep
each residence hall in optimal condition. If a problem arises, they will be there to fix it. All
your student has to do is fill out a simple work order!

What is a work order?
A work order is an online form that students can fill out detailing the task they need
completed in their room. Anything from a leaky faucet to a broken exhaust fan or a jammed window to a clogged drain can be addressed using a work order.

How can your student fill out the work order?
It is simple to navigate and can be completed in a matter of minutes. Your student must:
1. Log on to their Hofstra portal
2. Click the drop down “My Apps” located in the top right corner of the screen
3. Select the App “WebTMA”
4. Fill in their name, provide a very detailed description of the task needed to be completed,
fill in building, floor and room number
5. Click save on the top right corner

Simple as that!

If your student has a maintenance emergency that requires immediate attention they can reach
out to the Residential Life office at (516) 463-6930 or Public Safety at (516) 463-6606.

Wednesday, November 28, 2018

Thanksgiving Homestay Program

The Thanksgiving Homestay Program is a time in which families open up their homes to students who are staying in the area during the Thanksgiving break, it provides an opportunity for those who are not going home to be able to have a family experience!

We are thankful for the families and administrators that participated in hosting more than thirty students for Thanksgiving dinner!

Thursday, October 18, 2018

Student Health and Counseling Center (SHACC) Resources

Happy Fall Hofstra Parents!

The Student Health and Counseling Center welcomes your current Hofstra
students to explore all of the resources it offers. The Health and Wellness
center also offers weekly group sessions that strive to help your student live
their best life. The sessions are as following:

Hues and Beats
Where: Student Health and Counseling Center
When: Tuesdays @ 7:00 p.m.
This therapeutic group aims to address stressors that distinctly affect women of color.
Through art, music, and discussion, group members will explore issues, process concerns
interpersonally, and learn healthy coping strategies. Topics include but are not limited to
stress management, racism and discrimination, self image, and healthy relationships.

Coping with Grief
Where: Student Health and Counseling Center
When: Tuesdays @ 8:00 p.m.
This group provides support to students who have experienced a death or loss. Students
will be able to connect with others who share similar experiences, identify their personal
grief process, and develop healthy coping strategies.

Social Network Live
Where: 141 Mack Student Center
When: Wednesday @ 4:00 p.m.
Join fellow students for this social development training group to learn better ways to
begin, engage in, and maintain social connections and relationships.

Emotion Management Group
Where: Student Health and Counseling Center
When: Wednesday @ 7:00 pm
This supportive group is intended for students who would like to learn skills to manage
intense feelings and cope more effectively with emotional distress.

Social Anxiety Group
Where: Student Health and Counseling Center
When: Friday @ 3:00 pm
This supportive group focuses on helping students understand and reduce anxiety in
social situations. Learn and develop skills and strategies for becoming more comfortable
and confident in social settings.

Mindfulness Meditation
Where: Student Health and Counseling Center
When: Friday @ 4:00 pm
This group focuses on building the connectivity of mind, body and emotion through
meditation. Learn ways to relax and manage stress, anxiety and other emotions
whilst increasing awareness and staying in the present moment.

Recovery Group
Where: Student Health and Counseling Center
When: Friday @ 7:00 pm
Learn effective ways to live a balanced life through recovery from substance use.
This group provides support and offers techniques to build and maintain motivation,
cope with urges, and manage thoughts, feelings and behaviors for individuals in
recovery from addictions.

Although these sessions are held in groups, SHACC has other resources available
where your student can meet with a counselor and discuss any issue confidentially.
Individual counseling is offered for students on Monday and Wednesday
from 9 a.m. to 9 p.m. On Tuesday and Thursday from 9 a.m. to 7 p.m., and
on Friday from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m.

Students can inquire further or make an appointment for individual counseling
by calling the Student Health and Counseling Center at (516) 463-6745 or visiting
on campus at 250 Hofstra University, Hempstead, NY 11549.