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4 Tips to Help Your Student Learn Remotely

Dear Parents,

I hope this email finds you healthy, safe and well as we collectively adjust to our new “normal.” Bentley University has successfully made the transition to a remote, online teaching and learning classroom experience. Outside of the classroom, we are continuing to modify our approach to working with students from afar.

When your students are on campus, we regularly email and text them to make sure they have the details on campus events, updates and developments. But we always supplement that outreach with in-person reminders and connections via our Residential Advisors (RAs) and residential life staff, club advisors and coaches. We know that sometimes great messages get lost in emails and reminders in person can be helpful.

As “satellite campuses” open up inside your homes for the rest of this semester, I would like to ask your help in making sure your student are getting the help, support and information they need in the weeks ahead. My goal is to share news and updates from campus with you on a weekly basis, providing key information or action items that I hope will be helpful to you and that you will also discuss with your student.

This week, our top priority is ensuring students adjust to remote, online learning. So I’ll keep my update relatively simple with four high level reminders:

We are working to develop a range of success tools that will support students’ transition to online learning and aid study habits. We've sent students a survey to help them assess their online learning readiness and get connected to useable and timely resources. We have also developed a website with guidance and information for this transition to online learning. This new resource focuses on best practices for online learning. Encourage your student to visit this new site to find tips and best practices related to online, remote learning.

Shortly, we will be announcing a new program that links EVERY Bentley student to an individual staff person in the Division of Student Affairs. I often hear from students that they chose Bentley because they want to be somewhere where “someone knows their name.” In these difficult times, this is even more important. It is our goal for each student to know that there is one person with whom they can connect — the person may not have all the answers but they will know how to find it. They will be connecting with your student to check in and assist where needed. Suggest to your student that they take advantage of this one-on-one opportunity. It will help them remain connected to the university staff they work with every day, even from afar.

Student organizations, teams and activities are continuing. Coaches and advisors have already begun having Zoom meetings and one-on-one conversations. Programs are being developed to keep students connected to each other as well as to staff, faculty and Bentley. Support your student’s ability to remain involved in these organizations, teams, and activities.

Our offices are open and our services are available to students. The Student Affairs website has links to our offices where updated information on accessing services is being provided. Reach out to us. Students and families are welcome to touch base with our division at any point. We’re open and ready to help.

Thank you for your support in emphasizing these messages.  Please stay well and reach out if we can be of assistance.

J. Andrew Shepardson
Vice President for Student Affairs and Dean of Students