Read the issue for November 2_ 2010 - Student Parent HELP Center

Document Sample
Read the issue for November 2_ 2010 - Student Parent HELP Center Powered By Docstoc
					 Newsletter for November 2, 2010

                                     Photo by

                                       Election Day!

            “Children are one third of our population and all of our future.”
                    ~Select Panel for the Promotion of Child Health, 1981

Share with each other:
SPHC Facebook Group

The SPHC is on Facebook! Search for "Student Parent HELP Center" to join the SPHC group, or
for a larger group of student parents that includes graduate students and others not registered
with the SPHC, search for "University of Minnesota Student Parents". Being a part of the
“Student Parent HELP Center” group is another great way to stay connected with the SPHC and
other student parents as well as to share tips and resources, ask questions of SPHC staff and
other parents, and stay updated on SPHC events!

Student Parent Success Stories and Announcements

We would like to continue featuring personal success stories and announcements in our bi-
weekly newsletter. If you will be graduating this fall, having a baby, buying a home, getting
married, or are experiencing a related event, please let us know. You can send the
announcements or stories to the SPHC e-mail address ( We are proud of all of
your accomplishments and upcoming events, and would love to share them with others.

Student Parent Pictures
Have any great family photos that you want to share with others? If so, please send them to us
so that we can feature them in the newsletter. Please send us any pictures you want included
in a newsletter to as an e-mail attachment.

PASS Group (Parents as Students Support Group)
Wednesdays 12:00 PM–2:00 PM

                                      The Student Parent HELP Center PASS Group meets
                                      weekly on Wednesdays from 12:00-2:00 p.m. in
                                      Room 24, Appleby Hall.

                                      The group provides the opportunity to connect with other
                                      student parents, discuss the challenges and joys
                                      surrounding academic studies and parenthood and share a
                                      FREE lunch with your fellow SPHC friends.

                                     The direction of the group will be determined in large part
by your needs and ideas. Your willingness to share experiences and personal challenges will
undoubtedly help others, so we hope you will join us as often as you can. Feel free to come for
all or part of the group and remember that you are not obligated to come every week. Simply
come as often as your schedule allows. (Your little ones are welcome!!).

Wednesday, 11/3/10 from 12-2PM

Join us for another open discussion and resource exchange! Come prepared to share your
favorite fast, easy recipes, money saving tips, and affordable family activities! We will compile
these resources and post them in the next newsletter. Lunch will be lasagna with homemade
bread and a salad.

Wednesday, 11/10/10 from 12-2PM

Mandi Miller from the Learning Abroad Center will be joining us to talk about the study abroad
process and share tips for studying abroad with children. We also hope to have some of our
student parent study abroad alumni join us to talk about their experiences planning and going
on a trip abroad! We will have white bean chili and homemade bread for lunch.

Note: Please know that the SPHC staff does not want student parents to skip class in
order to attend the weekly group meetings. Academics are considered a student
parent’s priority at the U. If there is a specific topic you are interested in and you are
unable to attend group, please inform a staff member and we will be happy to provide
information to you afterwards.

If you have suggestions for a specific topic or program, contact Melanie Soland or Kara Fahey at

Please remember that the center is closed during group on Wednesdays from 12-2 p.m. for all
other resource use and studying spaces. Please come back in around 2 p.m. and we will re-open
the doors. If you are going to join us for lunch, please stay at least 1/2 hour and join in the
group in order to respect the food budget of the HELP Center.

What Student Parents say about group:
“I feel like I do better because I feel like I am not the only person with these stresses. I
feel it makes my life a little bit better.”
“Group keeps me positive and feel like I’m a part of the U, even though I’m different
because of my parenthood status.”
“A place I can come where other people understand the stress and challenges that come
with being a student parent.”
“I’ve gained confidence as a parent and have friends that are in similar situations.”
“Just a place you can relax—be with other people who can relate to you because they have
to balance school and kids, too.”
“It’s like being able to go home in between classes.”

FastWEB Scholarship Search

Register on-line for free and get scholarship applications you qualify for sent to your e-mail!


2011 Talbots Scholarship Foundation

In keeping with its long-standing tradition of helping women succeed, the Talbots Charitable
Foundation is proud to present the 2011 Talbots Scholarship Foundation and the Nancy Talbot
Scholarship Award for perseverance and ingenuity, which is presented in memory of the founder
of Talbots. This program empowers women to enrich themselves through learning and achieve a
college education later in life.

Awards are granted without regard to race, color, creed, religion, sexual orientation, disability or
national origin.


Applicants to the Talbots Scholarship Foundation must:

        Be women currently residing in the United States or Canada;

        Be women who earned a high school diploma or their GED on or before September 2001;

        Be enrolled or planning to enroll in a full- or part-time undergraduate course of study at
         an accredited two-, three- or four-year college or university in the United States or

        Be attending the full 2011-12 academic year and receiving a degree no earlier than May
         2012; and

        Have at least two semesters (24 credit hours or more) remaining to complete an
         undergraduate* degree as of the beginning of the 2011 fall academic term.

Talbots and Scholarship America employees or family members are not eligible to apply to this

Only the first 5,000 eligible applications submitted will be processed.


Up to ten (10) scholarships of $15,000 and one (1) $30,000 scholarship will be awarded. Only
applicants seeking a bachelor's degree are eligible to receive the Nancy Talbot Scholarship
Award. Awards are one-time only, are not renewable, and are paid in U.S. currency.
Awards are for undergraduate study only.
Application Process:

Register to apply online. You will need to read and agree to an online consent statement and
register with a username and password to create your application account. During the
application process, you will be able to leave the site by clicking on the Save and Log out button
located on any page. To return, you must enter your username and password. The application
must be submitted electronically by 11:59 p.m. on January 3, 2011.

Before registering, you may wish to gather the following information that will be needed for the
application process:

      List of your work experience and involvement in school and community activities

      Copy of your complete secondary and postsecondary academic record

      Financial information, including copies of your most recent tax form filed with the IRS or
       Revenue Canada if applicable.

More information and link to apply online at:

How to Get Letters of Recommendation for Scholarships:

Who Should Recommend You?

The best recommendations come from people who have worked closely with you and who
understand the goals of the award for which you are applying. Teachers and professors are
excellent sources, but also consider previous employers, coaches, clergy members and
community leaders.

Pick someone who can address the award’s special criteria or the sponsoring organization’s
particular interests. For example, the director of the homeless shelter you volunteer at would be
a great reference for an award sponsored by a community service group.

It’s also important that the letter writer can write well, and in particular, write well about you. If
they are evasive when you ask them to write you a letter, or seem uncomfortable or
unenthused, maybe you should ask someone else. Ask them if they can write you a good letter
of recommendation, and if not, who they would suggest you should ask.

Don’t ask a family member for a recommendation. Their praise won’t have the credibility to
impress the admissions staff.
When to ask:

In most cases, you’ll ask for recommendations as you need them; for example, when you apply
for college or scholarships. But you should also plan ahead. Start by making a list of potential
letter-writers, including names, addresses, e-mail and phone numbers.

Next, compile a file of letters before you need them, especially once you’ve started college. Ask
for letters right after you’ve finished a course with a professor who likes your work. If you wait
until you need the letter (maybe two or three years down the line), you risk losing it because
the professor doesn’t remember you.

Some colleges can help by maintaining a dossier, or official letter file. When requested, letters
from your dossier are sent directly and (if you waive your right to see them) can carry more
weight with the judges because they know the recommender was able to express his or her true

Make It Easy:

The people writing your recommendations are doing you a favor, so make it easy for them by
being polite and organized. Here’s how:
Provide ample time for the letter to be written. Give at least three weeks advance notice.

Make a formal request. Schedule an appointment to discuss the recommendation fully.

Supply your recommender with as much information as possible, including:

           o   Your correct contact information (your full name as it appears on the application,
               address, email and phone number).

           o   Materials/information needed for the application, including two copies of any
               forms the recommender is to fill out (for a “rough draft” and a “final draft”); the
               full title and description of the award; the correct name, title and mailing address
               of the recipient; a copy of your completed scholarship application/essay;
               complete instructions on how the letters should be handled; and correct deadline

           o   Information about your achievements such as your transcripts, your resume, and
               reminders of your past work with the recommender (e.g. a description of
               coursework, a copy of an essay or class project, etc.).

Parenting Information and Resources:
SPHC Library

The SPHC collection of books available in the center is a great resource for topics such as:
parenting (toddlers, babies, sleeping habits, teens, etc.), pregnancy, child development, career
planning, stress management, time management, grief, and children’s books as well! Stop by
the center anytime and ask a staff member if you want to check out a book.

Featured Book (two new copies in the center!)

Mama PhD by Evans and Grant

Mama, Ph.D. is a literary anthology of deeply-felt personal narratives by women both in and out
of the academy, writing about their experiences attempting to reconcile bodies with brains. This
anthology voices stories of academic women. The essays in this anthology speak to and offer
support for any woman attempting to combine work and family, and make recommendations on
how to make the academy a more family-friendly workplace.

Website for more info. about the book:

The National Parenting Center

An online resource for hundreds of articles by experts on parenting topics for pregnancy through
children’s teen years, product recalls, children’s book reviews, and more!

The National Parenting Center was founded in July of 1989 with the intention of providing the
most comprehensive and responsible parenting advice to parents everywhere. The advice
provided is furnished by some of the world's most respected authorities in the field of child
rearing and development.


How Much Sleep do Children Need?

The American Academy of Pediatrics Guide to Your Child's Sleep gives these guidelines for how
much sleep children need at different stages of development:

Between   Birth-Six Months, children need 16-20 hours
Between   Six-Twelve Months, children need 14-15 hours
Between   Ages 1-3, children need 10-13 hours
Between   Ages 3-10, children need 10-12 hours
Between Ages 11-12, children need about 10 hours
Teenagers need about 9 hours of sleep per night

If those numbers are surprising, you're not alone. As adults, we're accustomed to needing 7-9
hours of sleep, and we're often forced to get by with far less. As a result, it might be tempting to
think that our kids have similar sleep requirements, or that they should be able to cope fairly
well with a few skipped hours here and there. However, kids who are regularly sleep deprived
may display frequent irritability, overreact emotionally, have difficulty concentrating, forget
easily, wake often during the night, and may even display hyperactive behaviors.

The best thing you can do is simply move your child's bedtime up. This may sound impossible at
first, but by moving their entire bedtime routine up half an hour, you'll help them associate
bedtime with an earlier time. In fact, you may be surprised to find that they go to sleep easily
and sleep through the night more regularly when they are well-rested.

Cohen, George J., M.D., F.A.A.P. (Ed.). (1999). American Academy of Pediatrics Guide to Your
Child’s Sleep. New York: Villard.

How to Teach Your Child Manners

It's never too early - or too late - to teach your child about proper etiquette.

   1. Set a good example. It's unfair to expect politeness of a child if his parents are not polite
   2. Teach your child manners in stages, as his comprehension and skills develop. It probably
      won't do any good to ask a 2-year-old to stop chewing with his mouth open; he probably
      lacks the understanding and physical coordination to comply. But by 4 or 5 years of age,
      your child should have the ability to grasp the reasoning behind such a rule.
   3. Start using words and phrases like 'please,' 'thank you,' 'excuse me,' 'I'm sorry,' and
      'may I?' as early as possible around your child. Encourage your child to do the same.
   4. Take care what language you use around children; they mimic the way adults speak.
   5. Ask your child to address adults with a certain degree of formality - that is, Ms. Lee, Mrs.
      Doe, Mr. Smith - unless the adult tells them to do otherwise.
   6. Review the other basics of etiquette with your child whenever necessary. He should learn
      how to shake hands, show respect for older people, behave quietly in public places, and
      avoid interrupting other people in conversation. He should also learn not to play with
      other people's belongings unless given permission to do so.
   7. Avoid ignoring bad behavior or waiting to talk about it. Address a rule as soon as your
      child breaks it.
   8. Bring up the behavior again in private so you can discuss it more thoroughly and make
      sure your child understands how to behave in the future.
   9. Praise your child for good behavior.

Tips & Warnings:

When teaching or correcting manners, try never to embarrass your child in public.

Read more:

Community Resources:
National School Lunch Program

Any child at a participating school may purchase a meal through the National School Lunch
Local school food authorities set their own prices for full‐price (paid) meals, but must operate
their meal services as non‐profit programs.

Fact Sheet with contact information and eligibility can be found at:

Energy Assistance

Fall is here and winter is not far ahead! Many Minnesotans will see significant increases in their
energy bills that will strain their budgets. The Energy Assistance Program provides grants for
individuals in need. Please visit the following link for more information:

Or visit and you can select “Finding Financial Assistance” and you will
find information about the Energy Assistance Program there among other tips for staying warm
this fall and winter.

For more Community Resources, please check out our website (

If you’re not interested in applying but would like to see their information on nutrition topics (on
anything from dietary supplements to vaccines, it is on their website at:

Online Help with Physics

Need help with college physics? is an online resource that can help you find
information on many topics, from vectors and scalars to the kinetic theory of gases! This is a
resource not just for Physics, but a number of subjects such as Algebra, Biology, Chemistry,
French, Spanish, Trigonometry, and more.

Visit the website at:

Featured Campus Events and Resources:
Sunday Funday

At the Gopher Spot, located on the lower level of the St. Paul Student Center

25% off bowling for the entire family every Sunday from 12:30-10:00 PM.

Non-traditional Student Week

November 1-5

Each year the Vice Provost's Committee on Non-Traditional Student Affairs (VPCNTSA) hosts a
week of recognition and visibility events for Non-Traditional Student Week to recognize older
than average, parenting, first generation and veteran students.

Tuesday, Nov. 2

      Free pizza lunch and Non-Traditional Student Forum on Tuesday, Nov 2 from 11:00 am-
       1:00 PM. This does not require a formal presentation or panel, just students showing up
       and sharing their non-traditional student stories informally over pizza and beverages.
       You do not have to commit ahead of time, just be there by 11:30 if you want to join in
       the discussion. The forum/discussion will begin at 11:30 and pizza will be served
       between 11:15 and 12:45. All students, staff and faculty are welcome to attend!

Wednesday, Nov. 3:

      Free Theater, Photo Booth, and Crafts! Nov. 3 at the St. Paul Student Center
                   o   Photo Booth & Crafts: 4-7 PM in the Underground Lounge. Capture some
                       memories, then frame and decorate them!
                   o   Movie: Despicable Me 7-9 PM. Relax with some fresh popcorn.

Thursday, Nov. 4:

      Free snacks, beverages and info about undergraduate student parent services offered by
       the SPHC at the Student Parent HELP Center Open House in room 24 Appleby Hall on
       Nov. 4 from 9-Noon.
      Free Dancing, donuts, and cider! 12-1 PM on Thursday, Nov 4. Ballroom dance
       exhibitions and mini-lessons from the U of M Ballroom Dance Club. Inside Washington
       Avenue foot bridge, East Bank side.
      Non-Trad Facts on the Lawn Installation, Coffman Memorial Lawn/Plaza from 10-3 on
       Nov. 4. Stroll by and grab some fascinating facts about Non-traditional students at the U
       and across higher education.

Friday, Nov. 5:

      Free Pizza luncheon hosted by the Veteran’s Transition Center from 11:30-1 on Nov. 5.
       Room 302 Westbrook Hall, East Bank. Come join the VTC staff and students for some
       pizza and beverages. Meet and greet your fellow student veterans.

Featured Website of the Week:

Feeding America is the nation's leading domestic hunger-relief charity. Their mission is to feed
America's hungry through a nationwide network of member food banks and engage our country
in the fight to end hunger.

Their website is a multi-resource, food/hunger based website that has a food bank locator
feature and links regarding low cost meals, food banks, SNAP benefits and free school lunch
program information.

Community Events and Activities:
Free Minnesota Orchestra Concerts

The Minnesota Orchestra’s popular family concerts are FREE, thanks to generous support from
Target. These concerts present the world’s finest music in programs sure to delight—as well as

For greater convenience and accessibility to all, free tickets are distributed through a random
drawing. The registration period for the final two concerts in the spring (Water Music and
American Riffs) will be October 12-January 5, 2011.

Register online:

Free Museum Adventure Pass

The Museum Adventure Pass is a free pass from public libraries in Minneapolis, St. Paul and the
Metro Area. Each pass gives the holder two or four free admissions to a museum or attraction.

Twenty museums, galleries, zoos and historic sites in Minneapolis and St. Paul are offering free
admissions this year. The organizations in the scheme change every September.

Library card holders can visit one of the hundreds of libraries in the Twin Cities, and ask for a
free Museum Adventure Pass.
Each Museum Adventure Pass is valid for one week. Only one pass can be checked out at a time,
but there's no overall limit to how many can be checked out - you can go to all twenty - or how
many times a pass for a location can be checked out.

If you are not yet a library card holder, it is free to join. Visit a library location in the city where
you live with a photo ID, and the library can issue a library card.

Kids Eat Free
Have a 9-year old who eats like a horse? A toddler who only eats red food? Need a break? All of
the above? These Twin Cities locales feed kids for free. Check the day and/or age restrictions
and chow down. List of restaurants and details online at:

Fun Crafts for Kids:

Personalized Placemats

Ages 2-6


Construction paper, pictures, scissors, glue, self-adhesive laminating sheets

Activity Detail:

With your child, cut out pictures from magazines of your child's favorite things - foods, toys,
colors, etc. Give your child a glue stick and then help your child paste pictures onto a large sheet
of construction paper, card stock, or poster board.

Laminate your finished product and voila! - Your very own customized placemat.

A few other options: Instead of using magazine pictures, use your favorite family photos from
the past year.
Go with a theme: Use pictures of all foods, animals, letters, numbers, etc.

Make the placemat 2-sided: numbers on one side, letters on the other. You'll pay at least $5 for
these kinds of placemats in most stores!


Ages 4-6

Old magazines or catalogs, child-safe scissors, construction paper, and glue or rubber cement

Activity Detail:
Gather a stack of old magazines and catalogs. Choose a theme with your child and go on a hunt
for pictures connected to the theme (food, farm, family, animals, ocean, etc...). Cut out any
pictures you find related to theme. You can then spend time classifying and sorting the pictures
(for example, for food, sort by food groups or by veggies and meats or by meals); counting the
pictures; and talking about what pictures you didn't find. Once you've finished sorting, glue all
pictures down on a piece of construction paper to create a collage and great poster for your
child's room.

Quick and Easy Family Recipes:
Baked Apples


      2 large baking apples
      1 tbsp margarine/butter
      1 tbsp brown sugar
      1 tbsp chopped nuts, such as walnuts or pecans (optional)
      1 tbsp raisins
      Pinch of cinnamon
      Pinch of allspice


   1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees.
   2. Core apples (or cut apples in slices and remove seeds and core).
   3. Mix together butter, brown sugar, cinnamon, allspice, and chopped nuts together in a
      small bowl.
   4. Toss in the raisins.
   5. Stuff mixture into apple sockets and bake for about 30 minutes. (If using apple slices,
      cover slices with mixture).

Pumpkin Bean Soup

Serves 6 (1 serving=1 cup)

Cost: Per Recipe: $ 2.34 Per Serving: $ 0.39


      1 can white beans
      1 small finely chopped onion
      1 cup water
      1 can (15 ounce) pumpkin
      1 1/2 cups apple juice
      1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
      1/8 teaspoon nutmeg, allspice, or ginger
      1/2 teaspoon black pepper
      1/4 teaspoon salt


   1. Blend white beans, onion, and water with a potato masher or blender till smooth.
   2. In a large pot, add the pumpkin, juice, cinnamon, nutmeg, black pepper, and salt. Stir.
   3. Add the blended bean mix to the pot.
   4. Cook over low heat for 15-20 minutes, until warmed through.

Squash-Apple Casserole

Serves 6
Cost: Per Recipe: $ 1.48 Per Serving: $ 0.25

     2 1/2 cups winter squash, such as acorn, butternut or hubbard
     1 1/2 cups apples, cooking, such as Macintosh, Granny Smith or Rome
     1/2 teaspoon nutmeg
     1 teaspoon cinnamon

    1. Wash and prepare squash and apples (for extra fiber, keep peel on apples).
    2. Alternate layers of squash and apples in 8x8 inch pan; end with apples.
    3. Sprinkle spices over top layer.
    4. Cover with aluminum foil.
    5. Bake at 350 degrees for 45-60 minutes, until squash is tender.

If you have any healthy quick and easy recipes that you and your family enjoy, please
share! E-mail us at, and we will feature your recipe in an upcoming

The SPHC staff welcomes you!
Here’s who’s who at the center:

Susan Warfield, LICSW
HELP Center Program Director

Brief background:
I began my professional career working in group homes with abused, neglected and later
autistic children and adolescents. Upon completing my MSW I worked for 7 years in the Denver
Public Schools, serving inner city schools with highly diverse populations. Prior to entering
higher education I owned my own private practice as a clinical therapist, also in Denver,
Colorado. It was the work I did with college students as a therapist that led me to do a national
search for higher education positions, a search that led me first to North Carolina and eventually
to my position with the SPHC at the U.

Melanie Soland, MSW, LGSW
Student Parent Counselor

Brief background

I earned my bachelor’s degree in psychology from Augsburg College and my master’s degree in
social work from the University of Minnesota. My professional career began with an internship
with the Campus Kitchens Project at Augsburg College, a program that utilized donated food to
create nutritious meals which volunteers delivered and shared with members of the community.
I’ve also worked with isolated elders through Little Brothers- Friends of the Elderly, as an MFIP
job counselor in Ramsey County, and at a K-8 school in North Minneapolis. I was fortunate
enough to join the SPHC team during the 2008-2009 academic year as the graduate social work
intern/graduate teaching assistant, which is when I discovered my love of working with student
parents and working in a higher education setting. I am thrilled to be rejoining the SPHC team!

Tram Tran
Undergraduate Teaching Assistant

Brief background
I am entering my junior year here at the U, majoring in Psychology. After I earn my bachelor’s
degree, I would like to join the Peace Corps but I have no particular destination in mind;
anywhere I’m needed is where I would go! I do plan on going to graduate school for my MSW
and eventually going back to get a PhD in Clinical Psychology. I love helping others so I
volunteer with Big Brothers, Big Sisters, Crisis Connection, American Red Cross as a blood
services volunteer and I do overnight shifts at a homeless shelter! This is my first job in the
social work/psychology field so I am very excited about it and I look forward to meeting all the
student parents!

Kara Fahey
Graduate Social Work Intern

Brief Background
I earned my BA in Religious Studies from Lewis and Clark College. I recently completed a year
of service with AmeriCorps VISTA, where I was a Homework Center Coordinator for the Saint
Paul Public Library. I have worked with a broad range of students, K-Community College,
assisting them with their educational goals, in order to reduce the educational achievement
gap. Currently, I am pursuing an MSW here at the University of Minnesota. My interests are in
working with children and families in educational settings. I am excited to be working with
student-parents to learn more about pertinent issues, resources, and experiences they have
throughout their educational career.

Gwen Dezelske
Graduate Social Work Intern

Brief Background
I earned my Bachelor of Applied Science degree in Psychology from the University of Minnesota
Duluth. Following graduation I worked as a Direct Support Professional in an in-home foster care
program in Duluth. There I worked with adults with severe mental illness. My work experience
previous to that is in research psychology focused on gerontology. Currently I am pursuing a
Masters degree in Social Work at the University of Minnesota and am interested in gerontology
and hospice social work. I am excited to work with a new age group, learn about how to be a
support and resource for families in the SPHC, and consider myself very fortunate to be here
getting to know all the brave student parents who are also excited to learn and pursue a higher

Shared By: