Parent and Family Newsletter

December 2017

It's That Time of Year...

We are at the end of the Fall 2017 semester where we are wrapping up from a busy semester.

It's that time of year...when we tell you all about finals, stress and welcoming your student's home. Below, you will find the contents for this newsletter. Don't see something you would like to learn more about? Email Michael Circle at to learn more and help us grow this monthly newsletter to incorporate more of what you want to know.

  • Transitioning Home for Winter Break
  • 2017 Winter Break Shuttle Registration
  • Stress Relief Week!
  • Tips to Get Through Finals
  • Final Exam Schedule
  • Student Services Highlight: Disability Services
  • Housing Schedule
  • Athletic Schedule
  • Academic Schedule
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Transitioning Home for Winter Break

A Message from Vice President for Student Affairs, Cedric Gathings

We know that transitioning to college creates unique concerns, but another transition occurs when students return home during semester breaks. Whether it is the shorter Fall break, a month at home for Winter break, or a few months during Summer break, these transitions can be different for students and families. While it is an exciting time to observe your student developing through their collegiate experience, these breaks can also create a stressful environment for the entire family. Here are some things to expect during these breaks:

  1. Your student might be a little more independent. They have set their own schedule for the past few months and have developed different routines. Their sleep schedule might be different; and, you may feel they aren’t communicating with you as much as before. Open communication is the best thing to practice! Just keep trying -- and remember -- everyone is adjusting. The holidays bring their own stressors, so practicing open communication and encouraging patience from the entire family will results in smoother transitions for all.
  2. There have been changes for the entire family during these past few months. Remember your student has been establishing their new routine, but so have you and the rest of the family who still reside at home. It is important to remind your student that life at home, and the routines they were used to in high school, may look a little different. Reminding your student, and the entire family, to be respectful of everyone’s space and feelings are critical during these times.
  3. Your student might be exhausted the first few days at home. They just took their final exams and are likely mentally drained from several weeks of studying. This is when students really understand how college is different than high school. Give them time; and, remind them that you are there to support their college success.
  4. Your student will want to connect with their high school friends and may seem slightly distant at first. They are excited to connect with friends and tell of their college experiences. Be supportive of their peer connections, but it is okay to remind them that family time is precious when they only have a limited number of days before they return to campus.
  5. Some students are still struggling with where they fit in. They are still transitioning to college and may not have found their fit just yet. When they return home feeling a little out of place, don’t panic! This is totally normal. Remember that communication and respect are the keys to assisting your students as they navigate the many transitions that occur during their collegiate journey.
  6. You are not alone! Remember, that the Marshall University Division of Student Affairs is always available to assist with transitioning for the entire family.

Happy Holidays & Go Herd!

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Register at TODAY!

If your student would like to ride with us to Yeager Airport, please register at ! We must have enough registrations to keep the shuttles running.

Stress Relief Week

Stress! UGH! Finals time gets us all! The stress of comprehensive tests, trying to place each individual mentioned in a WWII course at the right spot at the right time, remembering which limb has the ulna and which has the tibia, it can be a bit overwhelming.

Never fear, parents! We have what your student needs to relax and take a deep breath during these trying times.

Stress Relief Week!

The Campus Activities Board has built a relaxing schedule of soothing tasks perfect for putting the mind at ease. From coloring sessions to aqua massages, CAB has what your young adult needs. Here is a schedule of our Stress Relief Week activities. Talk to your student about them and encourage them to take a step back and relax with us!

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Finals Countdown

Tips to Get Through Finals

  1. Students should start a study plan now! One difference between high school and college is that sometimes professors do not give out a study guide or have a review session. Students should find out if their final is comprehensive or just on certain subjects and then start a study plan.
  2. Students should talk to professors about any topic they are uncertain about. Students should use office hours as a tool to help prepare.
  3. Make sure they have a study space that is conducive to their learning. Drinko Library has study rooms that can be reserved.
  4. Use Tutoring Services, the Writing Center, and form study groups.
  5. Students should also take breaks and try to relax. Use the Rec Center to relieve stress or take a walk when they have been studying too much.

Also encourage your student to connect with Student Affairs for assistance during this time. We have resources and tips specific to your student’s needs. Students can also take advantage of Stress Relief activities!
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Student Services Highlight: Disability Services

The Office of Disability Services provides reasonable accommodations for students with any documented disability. Disabilities Services ensures equal access to educational opportunities for all our students.

We are proud to offer such a resource to our students, helping them to realize their potential despite setbacks not found in every household. You and your student can rest easy knowing the Office of Disability Services is there to provide study and testing aides, counseling services and more.

The documentation needs to be provided by a licensed professional such as a psychologist, psychiatrist, or treating medical physician depending on the disability. This documentation should have been completed within the past three years. Although, an Individualized Education Plan or a Section 504 Plan may be helpful, they will not serve as the documentation needed to receive the accommodations. As an office, we ensure your student will have physical accessibility to all Marshall University facilities.

It is your student’s responsibilities to schedule the initial intake appointment with the Director of Disabilities Services, which is located on the first floor of Prichard Hall. Any documentation should be provided at that time. If your student does not have up to date documentation, testing can be arranged. Accommodation requests must be provided each semester by your student, so that our office can notify each instructor of their accommodations.

As an office within Student Affairs, it is our goal to provide each of our student’s with the reasonable accommodations needed to ensure their success during their time at Marshall University. If you have any questions, contact Stephanie Ballou at or 304-696-2468. We look forward to meeting with you and your student. Go Herd!

Housing Closure/Reopening Schedule

December 17th: Housing closes @ Noon for all residents not registered for break housing

January 7th: Housing opens at 9:00am for students

* To apply for break housing residents need to fill out an online application by visiting

Upcoming Athletic Events

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December Events

Men's Basketball

12/02/17 - vs. Akron, Huntington, W.Va. 7:00 p.m. ET

12/05/17 - vs. Chattanooga, Huntington, W.Va. 7:00 p.m. ET

12/09/17 - @ Toledo, Toledo, Ohio 7:00 p.m. ET

12/16/17 - vs. Ohio, Huntington, W.Va. 7:00 p.m. ET

12/19/17 - @ Xavier, Cincinnati, Ohio, 6:30 p.m. ET

12/22/17 - vs. Eastern Kentucky, Huntington, W.Va. 7:00 p.m. ET

12/28/17 - vs. Southern Miss *, Huntington, W. Va. 7:00 p.m. ET

12/30/17 - vs. Louisiana Tech *, Huntington, W. Va. 7:00 p.m. ET

Women's Basketball

12/02/17 - vs. Southern Illinois, Huntington, W.Va. 1:00 p.m. ET

12/06/17 - vs. Morgan State, Huntington, W.Va. 6:00 p.m. ET

12/10/17 - @ Florida, Gainesville, Fla. 1:00 p.m. ET

12/16/17 - vs. Appalachian State, Huntington, W.Va. 1:00 p.m. ET

12/18/17 - vs. Kentucky Christian, Huntington, W.Va. 1:00 p.m. ET

12/21/17 - @ Tennessee State, Nashville, Tenn. 7:00 p.m. ET

12/30/17 - vs. Alice Lloyd, Huntington, W.Va. 1:00 p.m. ET

Academic Calendar (Dec. 2017 - Jan. 2018)

Monday, December 4, – Friday, December 8
“Dead week”

Friday, December 8
Last class day
Last day to completely withdraw from fall semester

Saturday, December 9
Exam day for Saturday classes
Some common finals

Monday, December 11
Exam day

Tuesday, December 12
Exam day

Wednesday, December 13
Study Day
Exams resume at 3:00 p.m. for Wednesday evening classes

Thursday, December 14
Approved Thesis/Dissertation must be submitted to the EDT website
Electronic Thesis and Dissertation form and graduation fee receipt submitted to the Graduate College Office

Thursday, December 14
Exam Day

Friday, December 15
Exam day

Saturday, December 16 10 a.m.
Winter Commencement, Big Sandy Superstore Arena

Sunday, December 17 Noon
Residence halls close

Monday, December 18 Noon
Final Grades due

Friday, December 22, 2017 – Monday, January 1, 2018
Winter break, University closed

Thursday, December 28 – Friday, December 29
Student Service Offices Open 10:00 a.m. — 4:00 p.m.
(Admissions, Bursar, Financial Aid, Registrar)

Tuesday, January 2, 2018
University reopens

Tuesday, January 2 – Friday, January 5
Registration/Schedule adjustments

Sunday, January 7, 9 a.m.
Residence halls open

Monday, January 8, 8 a.m.
First Day of Classes

Monday, January 8 – Friday, January 12
Late registration/schedule adjustment (add-drop)

Friday, January 12
Last day to add a class

Monday, January 15
Martin Luther King, Jr. Holiday – University closed

Tuesday, January 16
“W” Withdrawal period begins