by Jill O'Neal
As Brittney is finishing her first year at Texas Tech, we take every opportunity we get to talk with her about how fortunate and lucky she is to have received the Terry Scholarship. We are so thankful to the foundation and feel certain Brittney will work to give back to this great group of people.
Brittney participated in orientation and we encouraged her to do everything she could to get involved in school. As a Tech Terry Scholar, this enabled her to have a fantastic room in the residence hall and an instant inner circle of friends. Going into the year, we did not realize the amount of functions, the proximity of the other Terry’s living quarters and the instant feeling of belonging to a group that she would encounter.
A few things that I wish we had done prior to the start of school is to come up with a plan for things that might occur. Lubbock is over five hours from our home and although we visit, we are not close enough to be there quickly. Prior to starting or early in the first semester, I wish we had scoped out a few places. From where to buy groceries, a clinic that takes your insurance, an auto-body shop, a local dentist and a place to have your oil changed or your tires rotated would have been helpful information. Having caught the flu and unfortunately, having a fender bender happened this year and it would have been easier on Brittney if we had done some ground work ahead of time.
I think the busier kids are and the more involved they get in school, the less likely they are to get homesick; however, even though they may be super busy, they will get homesick. You will miss them as much as they miss you. For me, it has helped to send things in the mail to Brittney. She knows we are thinking about her and I love the tone in her voice when she calls after receiving a care package.
Most kids today have their own debit card and bank account. We talked with Brittney a lot about spending, budgeting and making the money she receives from the foundation last. She has complete control, but we absolutely talk about her budget, how she is spending her money and her long term plan. We talk about her bank account frequently.
TALK ABOUT THINGS THAT MATTER
The best advice I can give to a parent of a child that is about to start college is to talk to your child. Talk to them frequently and talk to them about things that matter. If you are doing that on a daily basis prior to school starting, they are going to continue to talk to you once they arrive at Tech. They will have roommate issues, encounter people that have different values than they do, face rejection, develop a crush, fall in love, have accidents, get sick, realize they have to study differently than in high school, find new friends, miss their siblings, spend too much money, realize they are no longer the biggest fish in the pond and make choices that will shape and mold their future. Having an open line of communication with them will allow you to continue to be a part of their life and will give them the support they need as they grow into adulthood.
Texas Tech is a great school and the people that work with the Tech Terry Foundation will help you support your child when you are not there. Know that your child will forever be a Red Raider and you will forever wear red and black.
While not the author of all of the posts, Heather Medley, the Terry Program Director at Texas Tech is the blogger of choice here.