A Parent’s Perspective

Choosing your university can be hard… not only for students, but also for parents! Kimberley Grobbecker, mother of 3rd Year student Kaylei Grobbecker, shares some of the things she’s learned since her daughter started her journey at #Ubishops.

Kaylei Grobbecker and her mom, Kimberley Grobbecker

Three years ago, the time came for us, as parents, to venture on the university bound trail with our second and youngest daughter. Choosing a university for Kaylei was difficult as she knew what she wanted but was unsure she’d find it in our home province. We, as parents, were quite concerned about the distance she would be from home. Kaylei feared all the universities near her hometown did not meet her idea of what university life should be for her. Kaylei, in speaking with her aunt about university, was informed of Bishop’s University. This began our journey not just once but three times to Bishop’s for tours and information.

We arrived for the first personalized tour with a student guide and Kaylei fell in love! The expression on her face said it all to us! We knew we had to put aside our feelings of “losing her” and remain as open and positive as possible, allowing Kaylei to take the lead on her journey.

After more visits, Kaylei was convinced that Bishop’s was the only place she could see herself striving to learn. Kaylei, throughout her journey, has certainly made Bishop’s University and the town of Lennoxville her second home.

We, as parents, had to learn to be supportive from a distance, while also assisting her in how to become independent. Here are some things we learned along Kaylei’s journey at BU:

  • The website at Bishop’s University is very informative and has lots of information about services provided such as Peer Tutoring, Residence Life, L.E.A.P., and countless other social and academic supports.
  • Don’t worry about the distance to and from home, there are several options such as bus, train, or plane as well as ways for the students to get to know one another and converse on a Facebook page. This may lead to student carpools home which is probably the most cost effective. However, if you’re the worried type of parent then be prepared for some long weekend drives to Sherbrooke/Lennoxville in the first year but certainly tapering off in second year. We did, however, enjoy the lovely hotel options for our long weekend stays.
  • There are several options for living outside of residence but from our experience, I would not recommend this for students who are from another province until at least second year of university. Residence life makes it easier to get involved and have all the support literally at your child’s door. Imagine your student rummaging through the backpack only to find no key… not a problem while in Residence as there is always a roommate, RA, or Security who can come to the rescue.
  • Encourage your child to become involved in the many social activities as well as focusing on academics as university life is about balance. The students have to learn that through experience and be themselves.

Our daughter had her fun times and challenging times but Bishop’s University motto “BE PURPLE, BU” certainly resonates in my mind. Kaylei has learned to persevere during the challenging times and enjoy being herself through participating in many academic and social activities. She also volunteers outside of Bishop’s in the picturesque community of Lennoxville. Kaylei, in her third year, has made Bishop’s her home away from home.

For more resources for parents of students, please visit https://www.ubishops.ca/resources-for-parents-of-students/

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