Dear CSU Parents and Families

Celebration is in full swing on campus - it’s a time for honoring those who have reached the milestone of graduation, a time to reflect on accomplishments, and a time to simply celebrate the end to a (hopefully) successful academic year.   In the spirit of this celebration and reflection we want to offer congratulations to families with graduating seniors.  They made it!! They’ve come a long way since Ram Welcome!  And to those families who are celebrating the end of a first year at CSU, congrats!!   It truly is amazing how quickly the spring semester goes by once we return from Spring Break, and in just a few short weeks our students will be finishing final presentations and projects, then completing their final exams.   Thank you for your continued support of your student’s success!

With this time of celebration, comes the beginning of a transition for many of our students.  We’d like to offer some support as your family moves through these changes.  Here are a few items to consider:

  • First-Year and Returning Students:  While you may be celebrating the return of your student, or their opportunity for a professional internship, students may be experiencing conflicting emotions – excitement and worry – as they head into the summer months. Returning home for the summer can be a tough adjustment.  Or, being away from home for the first time over the summer can also have its challenges.  Students will have to adjust to the balance of maintaining family responsibilities and expectations coupled with their new-found freedom, or job responsibilities, all the while hoping to maintain relationships made here at CSU.  For some students this task is daunting, offering your student an open line of communication to discuss these transitions is very beneficial during this time.  As a member of your student’s support system, this may be a great time to ask questions about their goals for the summer, encourage reflection on the previous academic year, and share hopes and expectations for the future. 

To help fuel conversation, we wanted to share a recent study by the Gallup-Purdue Index, which helps to shed light on factors that contribute to long-term success for a student.  The article, by Brandon Busteed, highlights six factors that college graduates who have found long-term career and life success had in common during their undergraduate experience.  Below are the six factors for success, check-in with your student to see if they feel they have met any of these factors, and if they haven’t, it’s a great time to encourage conversation and discovery around these areas.

  1. a professor who made them excited about learning
  2. professors who cared about them as a person
  3. a mentor who encouraged them to pursue their goals and dreams
  4. worked on a long-term project
  5. had a job or internship where they applied what they were learning
  6. were extremely involved in extra-curricular activities

As always, Parent and Family Programs is here to help support your family as you encourage your student’s success – don’t hesitate to call to brainstorm ways your student can reach these goals!

  • Graduating Students: We also know that graduation can bring with it feelings of anxiety while transitioning away from CSU and college life. Some students may be starting their first post-college job and moving to a new location where they will have to work to establish new friends and routines. Some may be moving back home for a period of time while mapping out their next adventures. Consider reading the pointers and tips our Dean of Students Jody Donovan offered in her article on boomerang kids to support them – and you! – as they move home.  At Parent and Family Programs we know that your support over the last several years has helped your student reach graduation. With any life transition, things feel “up in the air” for a while, and bumps in the road are to be expected. Regardless of their next steps your student will likely rely on you in new ways as you both begin this new chapter.

This is a time of celebration for both graduating students and their families to recognize accomplishments and remember experiences while at CSU.  For comprehensive information regarding your student's commencement ceremony see the detailed schedule below

Whether your student is finishing their first year of college or about to put on a cap and gown, communication is important. We want to take one more opportunity to thank you for the important role you play as part of your student's CSU experience. We appreciate all that you do, and even if they don’t say it all the time, your students appreciate you as well. 

Take care, 

Erin & Colin 

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Important Upcoming May Dates 

It’s that time of the semester again and Final Exams are right around the corner. With just one week of classes left, this time of year can be stressful and exciting while also filled with anticipation for summer. Be sure to support your student as they head into finals week by making them aware of the different things happening on campus that might help them focus and also de-stress. The first one is Final Exam Preparation, this workshop in the TILT Building will teach students about different exam formats and help them learn how to prioritize their time when they have multiple exams in one week. There is also the opportunity to attend Lory Student Center’s Late Night, where each floor will feature a different atmosphere allowing for all types of studiers to have a place to be. Also, don’t forget that Commencement Ceremonies are May 16 and May 17.  Congratulations Ram Grads!  

Finally, if your student will be moving out of the residence halls be sure they have contacted their RA to schedule a check-out appointment. More information can be found on the Housing Website

-Parent and Family Programs

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Spring Class of 2015 – Commencement Details

Spring Commencement will take place Friday, May 15th and Saturday, May 16th

Commencement at CSU is celebrated through college-specific ceremonies.  College ceremonies, along with Army and Air Force ROTC Commissioning, will recognize all undergraduate and graduate students.  

Event details are below, please also refer to the Commencement at Colorado State University webpage for additional details by College and contact information.  

Friday, May 15, 2015

Professional Veterinary Medicine (PVM)

8:00 a.m.
Moby Arena

Air Force ROTC Commissioning 

8:00 a.m.
Lory Student Center, Grand Ballroom

Army ROTC Commissioning

9:30 a.m.
Lory Student Center, Theatre

College of Engineering

11:30 a.m.
Moby Arena

The Graduate School

3:00 p.m.
Moby Arena

Warner College of Natural Resources

7:00 p.m.
Lory Student Center, Grand Ballroom

College of Health and Human Sciences

7:30 p.m.
Moby Arena

Saturday, May 16, 2015

College of Natural Sciences

8:00 a.m.
Moby Arena

College of Veterinary Medicine and Biomedical Sciences

8:00 a.m.
Lory Student Center, Grand Ballroom

College of Agricultural Sciences

11:30 a.m.
Moby Arena

College of Business

3:00 p.m.
Moby Arena

College of Liberal Arts I: Art and Music, Theatre, and Dance

4:30 p.m.
Lory Student Center, Grand Ballroom

College of Liberal Arts II

7:15 p.m.
Moby Arena

As your student is preparing for the ceremony, it’s important to familiarize yourself with the rules and expectations of those in attendance. 

  • The Academic Ceremony Guide provides insight into the expectations of the student, and details of the ceremony itself – the Preliminary Procession, Commencement Ceremony, and Subsequent Procession.  Additionally, as with many ceremonies at the University, the Commencement Ceremony is rich with tradition and symbolism.  The History of Academic Regalia provides explanation and history associated with Commencement.
  • Parking for the Commencement or Commissioning ceremonies are of great importance, as there are specific areas designated for “free parking”.  The Commencement and Commissioning Parking webpage will provide details, please contact CSU Parking Services at (970) 491-7041 if you have any questions.   
  • Please refer to the Graduation Day F.A.Q. for a summary of important items of consideration prior to Commencement.


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Homecoming and Family Weekend 2015

Don’t forget to mark your calendars for Homecoming and Family Weekend!  Homecoming and Family Weekend will be October 15-17, 2015.  While full details are not yet available, plan to enjoy the traditional fanfare (parade, bonfire, fireworks & football game), but also as parents and family members you are invited to join our staff in programming that is directly related to your experiences:

  • An informative session on housing options in Fort Collins,
  • A breakfast with fellow parents and family members, accompanied by a message from University leadership, and
  • a co-hosted tailgate with the CSU Alumni Association before the Homecoming football game against the Air Force Academy.

Our programming will begin mid-day Friday with a discussion about housing options for students after their first year, we encourage you to attend any and all events you can!  The Parent and Family Breakfast is a new event, we encourage you to join us for a nice breakfast and have the opportunity to hear from our University leadership!  Can’t wait to start a new tradition!

We’ll be updating the Homecoming and Family Weekend website throughout the summer and don’t forget to use the RAMFAM Association Business Directory when making your travel plans – some of our hotel partners offer great deals for parents and family members that find their information through our Directory!

We can’t wait to see you in October!

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Advising Insights:  Using the Summer Months for Academic & Career Exploration

By Haley Richards | Academic Support Coordinator, Center for Advising & Student Achievement (CASA)

Summer jobs, internships, travel and classes.  Regardless of your student’s plans, the summer months can be a great time for academic and career exploration.  Below is a list of academic and career exploration activities students can pursue in the summer:

  • Online research of majors and career fields is always recommended to students.  When things slow down during the summer, many students find the mental space to do some reflection and research on what may be a good fit for their interests, values and skills.  The Center for Advising and Student Achievement has information on how to get started with this exploration process.
  • Job shadowing and networking are valuable uses of your student’s time.  Encourage your student to talk to friends, family members, friends of family members, etc. to start building their professional network.
  • Summer jobs can help a student learn about an industry, gain exposure to different styles of management, and develop customer-service and conflict management skills. 
  • Summer classes are not only a way for students to catch up or get ahead on credits but they can also be a wonderful opportunity for exploration and discovery. 
  • Summer internships are positions (sometimes unpaid) related to the student’s academic or professional interests. Internships are a great way for students to gain hands-on experience in the professional world.

Most academic advisors have some availability during the summer months, so encourage your student to contact his or her advisor with questions or concerns about academics, majors, internships, etc.  Should your student want to connect with an advisor, please keep in mind that some students may have multiple advisors. 

Supplemental Advisors:

All students at CSU should have access to academic advising through their home academic department.  Some students have multiple advisors on campus.  Reasons for having multiple advisors include:

  • Declaring a second major – Typically a student should have an advisor for each major.  It is recommended to meet with each advisor a minimum of one time per academic semester.
  • Declaring a minor – Most departments do not assign students to an advisor if the student is seeking a minor.  However, advising is available, and it is recommended to meet with the department advisor once per academic year.
  • Seeking a professional program following CSU – CSU offers supplemental academic advising for students seeking admission into health-professional programs (medicine, nursing, optometry, etc.) and law following their time at CSU.  Interested students should make contact with health professions advisors or the pre-law advisor as early as possible to learn about entrance requirements, prerequisites, and involvement opportunities.    

We advisors know your student has a lot going on and remembering to schedule an appointment with even one academic advisor may seem overwhelming.  However, seeking advising from all departments is important for students to accomplish their goals and create the experiences they want at CSU. 

We wish you and your student a safe, productive, and enjoyable summer.

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CSU Earns First-Ever STARS Platinum Rating for Sustainability

If you haven’t heard yet, CSU earned the first-ever (for a college campus) Sustainability Tracking, Assessment & Rating System (STARS) platinum score.  Thanks to the efforts of students, families, faculty, staff, and administration, CSU’s rich history in sustainability efforts has most recently culminated in this incredible recognition.  Please see the following link for more details: 

This is definitely a source of tremendous pride for our campus community!

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ASCSU Election Results 

Students at Colorado State University recently elected their Associated Students of Colorado State University (ASCSU) President, Jason Sydoriak, and Vice President, Taylor Albaugh.  Every year, elections are held in late spring for CSU’s student government leaders who will be in office the following academic year.  Here’s a look at what president elect Sydoriak had to say after their victory:

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Sweet Summertime at Campus Recreation

By Brittany White | Communication Manager, Campus Recreation 

Summer is upon us, and the team at Campus Recreation is gearing up for new programming, activities, and the summer conference season. The Student Recreation Center operates under special hours during this time and access to the Rec Center is a bit different than it is during the normal spring and fall semesters.

Students who are taking six on-campus credit hours over the summer, meaning they are paying full student fees, will continue to have access to the Student Recreation Center as normal, including group fit classes, Intramural Sports, Outdoor Program trips, Red Cross classes, and more. Many students choose to take a lighter class load in the summer (less than six hours), and those students will need to purchase a special summer membership. These memberships run from mid-May to early August and cost either $90 for the entire summer, $35.00 per month, $20 per week, or $5.00 per day. Part-time summer school students can purchase their memberships by calling or visiting the Service Center at (970) 491-6359. The summer membership requirement also applies to playing Intramural Sports, so if your student wants to participate in IMs, but is taking less than six hours, they also need to purchase a summer membership.

Campus Recreation offers a variety of unique programming and activities over the summer including Intramurals, fitness classes, and more. Planned Intramural Sports leagues for the summer include sand volleyball, 6v6 indoor soccer, softball, 3-on-3 outdoor basketball, and 4v4 outdoor soccer. Summer IM tournaments include Badminton, Xbox, Golf, a Weightlifting Competition and much more! Leagues are IM sports that span four weeks, and tournaments are usually one or two days long.

The Fitness Program will be offering programming including martial arts classes, one-on-one and partner personal training sessions, personal trainer fitness camps, and a special summer group fitness class schedule.

For more information about all these programs, including costs, dates, times, and events not listed in this article, please visit our website at

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Off-Campus Housing Safety: Fire Watch

By Ed Comeau | Campus Fire Watch

As the school year winds down at colleges and universities across the country, students are looking at off-campus apartments and housing for next year. In most college communities, there are always more students looking for rentals than there are properties available, so the choices for safe, affordable housing are often limited and compromises may have to be made.

A choice in housing may hinge on three factors:

  1. Is it close to campus?
  2. Do I get my own room?
  3. Is it affordable?

These are certainly important things to look for, but when it comes to fire safety, there are other considerations as well. The potential list is long, but I would distill it down to what I think are the top three priorities based on the fires I have seen over the years in off-campus housing:

  1. Does it have two ways out from each floor? Sometimes this might have to be an escape ladder.
  2. Does it have working smoke alarms, one on each floor, and one in each bedroom?
  3. Is smoking not allowed? Smoking is the leading cause of fatal fires, particularly when they start on couches out on the front porches or decks.

These dangers are real.  Students were killed in fires in Boston and Cincinnati because they were trapped in their third floor rooms. Students were killed in fires in Madison and Ann Arbor because a fire started on a couch on the front porch and then swept into the house in the middle of the night. Students have died in fires where the smoke alarms were missing or the batteries had been taken out.

I have two sons in college, and we all want to give our kids the freedom to make decisions, including picking where to live, but this is something that they just may not think about. Last September I spent move-in weekend going around Boston talking with parents, and for every single one I talked with, this was the first time they were seeing where their son or daughter was going to be living. Many were appalled at the choices that had been made, but it was too late.

This is something you can be a part of, and even if they have already picked a place, you can still make a difference when you are helping them move in next fall. Not enough smoke alarms? You can talk with the landlord or, even faster, just go out and buy them and put them up yourself. It's cheap, quick and easy.

Is your child living on a second or third story with only one way out? Give them a fire escape ladder. I just came back from an off-campus fire in Columbus, Ohio. All of the students got out safely through the stairway, but in one of the rooms there was a box with an escape ladder in it. She was ready-is your son or daughter?

Yes, we want to let them make choices, but they also need to learn how to make good choices, and this is an opportunity to help them before they head off on their own. Whether it is now, when they are picking an apartment, or next fall, when they are moving in, I encourage you to be a part of it!


Ed Comeau

Campus Firewatch

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In this Issue

CSU Acronyms

ASCSU - Associated Students of Colorado State University

Poll Results

Last month, we asked about where your student plans to live next year. With a strong 56% most students plan to live on campus in the residence halls. 34% plan to live off campus, 4% will be studying abroad (how fun) and the remainder were still undecided. Don't forget to stop by our page and take this month's poll as well!  


Major: Soil and Crop Science


Student Involvement: Lory Student Center Late Night

RAMFAM Association Business Directory 

Be sure to check out our featured Platinum and Gold Partners:

Fort Collins Marriott

RE/MAX Advanced, Inc.


SuperShuttle Airport Shuttle


Best Western- University Inn

Best Western

Connecting With Us On Social Media

As many of you know, Parent & Family Programs is on Facebook! If you like our page using the image below, you will be kept up to date with happenings around campus, and important information regarding campus emergencies. You can also connect with other parents and families in this group! Thanks for partnering with us to help your student succeed at CSU!

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