Monday, April 29, 2013

Wearing Different Hats at Hofstra

It’s tough these days juggling several responsibilities: implementing time management, prioritizing your day and completing tasks. If I sound like a parent, I am; but in addition, I am currently a graduate student, a Hofstra employee and an intern at Hofstra’s Office of Parent & Family Programs. Yes, it seems like a lot, but the benefits outweigh the work involved.

As you have probably experienced, parenting can be a 24/7 career, an opportunity for growth, and a reason to be proud. Being a part of my student’s academics, which basically means respecting their decisions and being there for them, while routinely asking them how they are doing and how class is going, has allowed me to develop a strong bond with my student. I believe just staying close enough to be aware and offering a listening ear can draw them closer while giving them the independence they seek.

Having the opportunity of being a student while I am a parent has helped me to empathize with my student. I have gained a new perspective of what my student has to commit to in order to succeed academically. It has given me opportunities to interact and make suggestions based on current first-hand experience.

I'm a Hofstra mom, a Hofstra student, and I have just celebrated my tenth year of working at Hofstra, yet another hat I wear. Presently I am a senior executive secretary for the School of Health Sciences and Human Services. I am grateful for all the experience and insight Hofstra has given me. The knowledge, lectures, events, campus camaraderie, and just being within the campus environment have been enlightening.  It is a positive place to be and reminds each employee they are connected to the Hofstra PRIDE family.

My newest hat these days is supporting the Office of Parent & Family Programs as an intern. I have gained even more knowledge about how important it is to be involved with your student, all the while letting them grow and become independent adults. I look forward to interacting with other parents, meeting potential students and just being involved with such a supportive office that offers convenient services, such as having a direct contact for parents with various questions to go to. The Office of Parent and Family Programs serves as a sort of liaison between parents and all other campus departments and resources. The Parent and Family office allows parents to “stay in the know” when it comes to Hofstra information and their students.

So far, I have learned what the Division of Student Affairs consists of and how each department runs its office (knowledge I will need for my future counseling position). This knowledge has also personally helped me become even more aware of recognizing the importance of an involved, connected parent while still giving your student the space they need to grow, and overcome the dilemmas they may encounter.

Jeannie knows how crazy it can be to balance work, class and being a Hofstra parent.

-Jeannie Renda, Senior Executive Secretary for the School of Health Sciences & Human Services and Intern at the Office of Parent & Family Programs


Jeannie Renda has been interning with us this semester and will continue throughout the summer of 2013, assisting us with Parent Orientation. She is pursuing a M.S.Ed. in School Counseling under Dr. Laurie Johnson and will graduate this August. As part of Jeannie's internship in the Office of Parent and Family Programs, she is interacting with parents of undergraduates from the winter parent welcome, Admissions' open houses, admitted student days, and Siblings Day to the graduating seniors' send-off reception. In addition, today, Jeannie was observing office operations and daily services. She has given us feedback about our parent web site and publications. Jeannie has also attended Parent Council meetings, helped edit our handbook, blogged, and attended our staff meetings to gain a clearer and deeper understanding of how decisions are made while contributing to our brainstorm sessions.

Jeannie is presently employed as a senior executive secretary for Hofstra's School of Health Sciences and Human Services. She began her journey with Hofstra ten years ago in 2003, working as a part-time secretary in the School of Business. She graduated in 2009 with a B.A. in Business Management. All three of her children are also part of the Hofstra Pride: her eldest son is an alumnus, her youngest son is currently a junior, and her daughter will be begin her first year at Hofstra this fall. She lives in Massapequa.

Monday, April 22, 2013

Tips on Textbooks

Textbooks can be such a hassle to buy, yet they are an inevitable part of your student's college career. Though some courses rely heavily on information found in required texts, this is not always the case, which means you may end up spending the semester with some unnecessary baggage after an expensive trip to the bookstore.

Picture courtesy of wohnai from Flickr.
As a second year student on scholarship, I have come to realize that, though they are often necessary, textbooks can be costly.  After buying books for my Biology and French courses last semester, I only had enough money to get one additional textbook, which left me without enough cash to purchase books for my other two courses (I registered for five last semester). So, in my time of desperation, I did some research and quickly discovered that even though the Hofstra University Bookstore is very convenient and carries everything your professors request, it is not always the cheapest option.

Sites such as Amazon and Chegg, for example, often sell textbooks at a more affordable price than the bookstore. While such sites will not be remarkably cheaper all of the time, any additional money in your pocket goes a long way.  With a simple Google search and a little help from the sites below, you can get some great deals on college textbooks.


-Mikwaevonn Mills, Class of 2015

Monday, April 8, 2013

Top 5 Things to Do in Spring

It's finally starting to feel like springtime on Long Island, and that means that students have started chilling out on the quad instead of feeling chilly in their residence halls. Hopefully, your students have been able to catch a break now that we have wrapped up Spring Recess, but here are a few things you can suggest to them to pass the time in between classes:
  1. Play Mini-golf at Eisenhower Park: Though the batting cages are still undergoing repairs due to Superstorm Sandy, mini-golf is open and ready for business. During the spring, the courses are open weekends: Fridays, 1:00-7:00 p.m. and Saturdays & Sundays, 10:00 a.m.-7:00 p.m. There are two courses, which are both loads of fun; and since they're located near the Aquatic Center, they're only a short stroll (or even shorter drive) away from campus.
  2. Watch New York Islanders Hockey: We are just now entering into the final month of the regular season and our neighbors are knocking on the door to the playoffs. The Islanders have only three home games left in the month of April, but great rates remain on tickets for Hofstra students.  In fact, a Hofstra student can get a ticket in section 336 (the Hofstra Pride Zone) and a $5 food voucher for just $15 as long as they show their Hofstra ID at the box office an hour before select games. Even if your student doesn't consider himself or herself an Islanders fan, or if they have never seen a hockey game before, the games are a great way to spend an evening.
  3. Take a walk around campus: Hofstra's campus is at its most beautiful in spring.  The flowers just begin to bloom, and spaces like the trees between Phillips and Mason Halls on South Campus come alive with color. Urge your student to take some time away from your residence hall this spring to take in the scenery--they may even find a new favorite spot.
  4. Visit the Cradle of Aviation's Planetarium: Each season, the Cradle of Aviation guides visitors along the cosmos, and, this time of year, help them locate all sorts of celestial objects that dot Long Island's primaveral sky. The presentations cater to all kinds of tastes and interests beyond the scientific: your student can also learn about the mythology surrounding our night sky during the presentation.
  5. Enjoy the quads and the intramural fields: After a long day of classes or work, urge your student take some time to enjoy the sun on Calkins Quad or have a catch on the intramural fields on North Campus. After spending all that time studying, they will definitely appreciate the fresh air and sunshine. Now let's hope we get plenty of warm weather for them to enjoy!

Make sure your student takes advantage of
Hofstra's spring sights as the trees begin to bloom.