Conversation Starters

Issues, challenges, and choices

During college, students are faced with many choices and challenges. Values can be tested as students are exposed to new experiences. Below are some topics and information for having conversations with your student. Also provided by the voices of current Gustavus students are perspectives to current issues. This is not intended to be an all inclusive list.

General questions to be supportive

  • Tell me about your classes.
  • What activities have you participated in this week?
  • Tell me about the people on your floor/section.
  • Did you attend all your classes this week? If not, why not?
  • What can I do to help?

Other Concerns

  • Choosing a roommate
    Items students should think about before agreeing to live with someone.
  • Students' Perspectives on Roommates Conflicts
    Both pieces touch upon Residential Life Staff and Collegiate Fellows being there if conflict do arise between roommates.
  • Students' Perspectives on the Transition to Campus
    These upperclassmen offer insight into such topics as the first-year transition, making friends, the family transition and even the debating thought of transferring.
  • Students' Perspectives of Faith Life on Campus
    Students tell about having their faith and vocation tested once they came to college.
  • Money
    Where is the student employment paycheck going? Who is paying for books? What students should do with all the credit card offers that come in the mail. Information to help your student navigate the financial course.
  • Students' Perspectives on Academic Expectations and Pressures
    A senior shares his knowledge of how students can be affected by the pressures and expectations to perform at a high academic level and resources students can utilize, while another student explores the phenomena of being a big fish in a small pond drowning in the sea of a new environment.
  • Choosing a major and career path
    Areas and questions students can consider when choosing a major and career path.
  • One Student's Perspective on Choosing a Major
    Learn this senior students' knowledge of the process most students experience while exploring majors.
  • Grades
    Information to help you have a conversation with your student about grades.
  • Alcohol
    Information on Gustavus policies regarding alcohol and ways parents can help their students make safe choices.
  • Personal Safety
    Although Gustavus and St. Peter are generally very safe, precautions and good judgment should always be used to protect one's self and belongings. Petty theft is the most frequent crime on campus and is often preventable.
  • Physical and emotional health
    With the many stresses of college, students are susceptible to physical and emotional illness. Here is information to help keep your child healthy.
  • Students' Perspectives on Grief Support and Loss
    While each students' form of loss was different their experience with support during the grieving process at Gustavus was similar.
  • Study Abroad
    Over 50% of students study abroad. Here is information to help students decide if this is the right choice for them; the financial and academic impacts; choosing and registering for a site.
  • Students' Perspectives on Studying Abroad
    These are two different accounts from students about what an amazing experience it is to go abroad.
  • Summary of Student Perspectives