Quarterly Connector
August 2022

In this Issue

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President's Perspective

In the past two days, I spend a total of 38 hours on campus welcoming our new students and their families to RIT. AHEPPP friends…this was probably the most successful move-in I have experienced in my eight Augusts at RIT. The weather was, in one word, PERFECT. The Covid years made us rethink our move-in process, which is now smoother than ever (one public safety officer actually sat in the lot where families pick up the keys, and after several trials, reported that the average time from entering the lot and leaving with keys was 1 minute and 33 seconds). Students were excited and families were happy. While I am unbelievably exhausted today, it’s pretty amazing to come to work this morning and not feel like there are fires to put out and issues to account for. I am wishing you all an equally smooth of a start to the new academic year!

Like many of you, my last several months were so heavily focused on orientation and our incoming families. If I’m completely honest, I’m excited to shift from that work into other projects that support different populations of parents. Conversations that I had with campus partners over the last few days gave me a new energy as I heard questions like, “Can we collaborate to plan an event for parents of commuter students?” “When will we re-start the family study abroad trip?” and “What can we do to share information about our spirituality programs with parents?”

Even with this energy and excitement, the effects that Covid had on our campuses and our students still lingers in my head. Do you realize, for example, that those first-year students who were sent home after their first spring break in March 2020 are graduating this spring? Our first class of students who came to campus wearing masks and getting tested in fall 2020 are now entering their third year in college. What will their initial experiences on our campuses mean for their job searches? What can we do to help their parents prepare them for life after college?

I’m excited to chat with you all on the Online Community and in Orlando to share what our campuses are doing to support our early Covid classes. Additionally, I’m am thrilled to share with you that our Associate Member Wise Action is soon to publish a new book that will help your parents through this transition. Post College Ready: Expert Advice for Parents to Support Their College Senior provides information on the importance of senior year traditions, applying to graduate school, job searching, moving home with parents, and how social lives will change post-graduation. Please stay tuned for more information about how you can promote this resource to your parents!

From move-in to graduation and beyond, families are important. As family engagement experts, you make a difference in the lives of so many. Keep up the good work, and best of luck with the start of the new year!


Chelsea Petree
AHEPPP President
Director, Parent & Family Programs | RIT

Join us for Hot Topic Discussion Zones!

Kick your weekends off with conversation and community building! Friday Discussion Zones allow you to network, share ideas, and gain knowledge from other members from across the country. Bring your questions and ideas to our autumn round-table events. Please register using the links below:

Let's Talk: Bring your best stories and questions to ask your colleagues
Friday September 9 | 2pm ET/1pm CT/12pm MT/11am PT

Communication Planning
Friday October 7 | 2pm ET/1pm CT/12pm MT/11am PT

Equity, Belonging, and Inclusion in AHEPPP & Family Relations
Friday December 2 | 2pm ET/1pm CT/12pm MT/11am PT

2022 Family Engagement in Higher Education National Conference

Registration is open for the 2022 Family Engagement in Higher Education National Conference. Join us for our first in-person event since 2019! We are pleased to offer you an affordable in-person experience with even deeper discounts for members. Join us in Orlando, Florida November 2-4 as we connect, celebrate, and support our colleagues in family relations.

The conference begins the evening of Wednesday, November 2 with a Welcome Dinner and concludes Friday afternoon, November 4 with an optional Epcot excursion to follow.

Regular Registration closes September 16

Membership Matters

There is no other organization solely dedicated to supporting your work with families and providing you a community of colleagues who understand what you do. We are grateful for your support and partnership and look forward to a wonderful year. Thank you for renewing your membership and a sincere welcome to those who have just recently joined!

This quarter we welcome 7 institutions into our professional family:

AHEPP Member Logo

Bethel University
Molloy University
Meridian Community College
Doane University
Wentworth Institute of Technology
University of Alaska Fairbanks
San Jacinto College

Don't forget to maximize your membership by including four individuals on your account! Email [email protected] to add your colleagues.

Maximize Your Membership!

AHEPPP is proud to offer you one-of-a-kind resources specific to your important role on campus. As we begin a new academic year, don't forget to take advantage of our members only resources to help you plan and engage families and supporters all year round! Log in to access these tools.

CAS StandardsAccess to specialized industry standards for family engagement created by AHEPPP experts and the Council for the Advancement of Standards in Higher Education (CAS), the preeminent body for promoting standards in student affairs, student services, and student development programs.

Communications Calendar & Planning Guide: Broken down monthly, this resource includes suggested timing for content, important action items for parents, conversation starters for families and best practice examples of college parent/family communications.

Survey BuilderThe AHEPPP Survey Builder and Planning Guide is exactly what you need to get started on your own parent survey. Along with tips on how to gather results and use your findings, the guide includes nearly 60 survey questions for you to choose from in creating your own survey.

Parent & Family Council Guide: This guide aims to provide you with a starting point for creating Parent and Family Boards, Councils, and/or Volunteer Programs. This guide will help you determine what model best supports the needs and goals of your institution and office.

Are You New to Parent/Family Relations?

Join us for the virtual AHEPPP Institute, Building or Sustaining a Successful Family Program, on Friday, October 21 from noon to 5 p.m. ET. This certificate program is designed for those new to parent and family engagement or building a new parent and family program. Attendees will engage and interact with colleagues in the field to begin building their professional network and learn promising practices from field experts which can be utilized on their campuses. Participants in this cohort-based institute will have an opportunity to connect in person for a designated session at the conference. In-person conference attendance is not required.

Register now!

Just 35 Items to Create the Perfect College First Aid Kit - Shareable article!

Jill Grimes, MD, is a nationally recognized medical media expert, award-winning author, proud parent of two collegiate daughters, and also an associate member of AHEPPP. Dr. Grimes has written an article and invited you to share it with your families! A sample is below and the full article can be accessed here.

Sending our kids off to college is both thrilling and terrifying at the same time. We want them to experience “the BEST years of their life” (no pressure, right?) while doing all the fun things we did…or perhaps the things we missed out on. We never want to see them hurt physically or emotionally, but the truth is they WILL stumble- whether it’s a bad grade, a bike accident, food poisoning, mono, insomnia, or heartbreak. Ultimately, it’s not the stumbling we fear, but how and when they get back on track. One last gift you can offer is a fully loaded COLLEGE FIRST AID KIT that will help your student help themselves.


Job Postings

Are you hiring? The AHEPPP Job Board provides a comprehensive list of job openings in the field of parent/family engagement as well as other partner areas within higher education such as orientation, enrollment management, advancement/development, alumni relations, and senior level student affairs roles. It's free for members to post!

Click here to view or post a job!

Questions? Please contact

 Stay In Touch

Online Community ScreenshotWe know how much you value networking with your AHEPPP friends and colleagues through conferences, regional events, workshops, and other programs. This is how we learn best – through one another's experiences and expertise. Our new Online Community builds on these connections by creating an environment for all members to connect and engage by sharing best practices and advice, exchanging resources, and building relationships. Our association is proud to offer you our newest members-only resource - the AHEPPP Online Community.

Not sure how to get started? - click here to watch a quick tutorial.

Connect on Social!

Are we friends yet? Be sure to follow @aheppp on your social channels to stay on top of dates, reminders, and fun #familyengagement related posts like a recent podcast by Associate Member VZ and an AHEPPP Founder.

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