Parents & Families

Welcome Parents!

As you prepare to send your child off to college, we are ready to assist them in transitioning from a new college student to a successful and motivated member of the working world. 

We know that each student develops differently, and there are different paths to academic and professional achievement. It’s why we created this Parent Guide, as well as a variety of different programs and services for students including our Academic and Career Services Center below. We’re committed to helping you help them, while still making sure to encourage each student’s personal responsibility.

Parent Guide 

Technology is a great way to keep in touch with your child. Schedule a Facetime or phone call, or even just send a quick text to say hi. Communicating with your child is the best way to keep your relationship strong, to understand the challenges they may face and to celebrate their successes.

Questions to Ask Your Child
  • Do you know who your adviser is? Have you met with him or her? Tip: If your child does not know who their adviser is, please have them visit the Academic and Career Services Center.
  • What classes do you like the most (or least)? Why? 
  • Which professors do you enjoy the most (or least)? Why? 
  • How much homework do you have? Is it more or less than you thought it would be? 
  • What do you think about getting a tutor or joining a study group? Tip: Tutoring is free for all students. 
  • Have you decided on your major? 
  • Are there other majors or minors that interest you? Tip: Some majors require a minor and majoring in two areas is a possibility. 
  • Have you found a way to schedule everything so you aren’t overwhelmed? Tip: Many students struggle to balance athletics, classes, homework, sleep, socializing and/or work. Encourage them to set and maintain priorities. 
  • Are you getting enough sleep? Tip: Don’t accept, “Mooooom, I’m in college now” as an answer. Sleep is important! 
  • What events or activities have you gone to? Tip: Look up DWU’s event calendar to find specific current events your child could attend. 
  • Are there groups on campus that interest you? Tip: Encourage your child to join a club or activity in their interest area, even if it is not directly related to their major. 
  • Have you made friends? Who do you spend your time with? How are you getting along with your roommate? 
  • Are you enjoying yourself? 
Questions To Ask Yourself

Yes, you can even ask yourself some questions to make sure you are doing what you can to help your child have a great college experience.

  • Do I allow my child to solve their own problems, or do I “come to the rescue” when I sense trouble? Tip: College is a time for exploration and developing independence; give your child the opportunity to learn how to confront and overcome problems. 
  • Is my child feeling pressured to choose a major, or to choose a specific major? Where is that pressure coming from? 
  • How does my child respond to peer pressure, both positive and negative? Am I concerned that could change in college? Why? 
  • Does my child have good study skills and time management experience? Tip: Encourage your child to spend time and collaborate with friends who have good study skills and time management abilities. 
  • Is my child acting in ways that seem out of character? For instance, a social butterfly “not making any friends.” Tip: If your child is reporting or exhibiting behaviors that seem extremely unusual, please contact the dean of students or the campus counselor immediately. 
FERPA and Your Student

Dakota Wesleyan University is bound by the Family Education Rights and Privacy Act of 1974 (FERPA), a federal law designed to protect the privacy of a student’s personal educational records. The basic policy states that no information (other than directory information) will be released without written permission from the student. This means that written and dated permission is required from your child before information can be released to you, even as the student’s parent or legal guardian. Your child will be asked to complete a Release of Information form as part of their registration process. Make sure you discuss this to avoid misunderstandings. 

The Academic and Career Services Center 

As a parent, you can help your child by encouraging them to be honest about their accomplishments as well as about frustrations they have—because in college, they’ll be facing new situations and they will experience frustrations. Together, we can partner to help them discover how to solve problems and how to make the most of their college experience. 

The Academic and Career Services Center can help with: 

Choosing a Major

You and your college student-to-be are probably both wondering what their major will be—and you might even have different ideas about what to choose. Because this is one of the most critical decisions a student will make during their college experience, it can be quite a nerve-wracking process.

At the Academic and Career Services Center, we work with college freshmen and sophomores to explore their academic and career options in a way that will help them to feel less pressure.

We want them to make a decision sooner rather than later, though. In some cases, waiting to choose a particular major may increase the time it takes to finish college.


DWU provides peer tutoring to all DWU students at no cost. 

In addition, there are positions open every semester for student tutors who are interested in building up their resumés and gaining real-world work experience with this great experience. 

Career Services

We also have a career services office at DWU. We use a student-empowerment model of career coaching, helping students to understand their own responsibility for their future.

When they begin to consider prospective careers, we are able to give them the direction, tools and opportunities they need to understand how a career develops from submitting that first application and resumé all the way through interviewing and accepting a job. 


For questions related to admissions,
please contact the Admissions office.  
Phone: 605-995-2650 

For questions related to career services,
please contact the Academic and
Career Services Center. 

Phone: 605-995-2904 

Fredel Thomas, MBA

Vice President of Admissions and Marketing

Where to Stay?

Mitchell offers many comfortable places to stay; these local hotels offer a special rate for DWU guests. Ask for the “DWU Rate” to receive the discounted rate. 

Hampton Inn 605-995-1575
Comfort Inn 605-990-2400
Days Inn 605-996-6208