Most col­leges host a Parents Weekend. It’s once a year in the fall, and it’s geared toward giving the parents of freshmen a window into campus life. Fewer col­leges do another such weekend during the spring semester, because other schools don’t hold parent-teacher conferences. 

The way Hillsdale does Parents Weekend, each semester the pro­fessors who are cur­rently teaching us get at least one weekend to better under­stand their stu­dents by meeting who we came from. Likewise, it gives our parents a glimpse of the sub­jects that we are learning — directly from the instructor. We admire the high-quality pro­fessors here at Hillsdale, so it’s a blessing to have the oppor­tunity to share these mentors with our parents. It’s an oppor­tunity to deepen the rela­tion­ships of everyone involved.

We often quote “college is a part­nership” to emphasize the impor­tance of student self-gov­er­nance when demanding greater freedoms on campus. But that part­nership is not limited to stu­dents, pro­fessors, and college admin­is­trators; part­nership involves our parents, too. They’re the reason we’re all here in the first place.

As stu­dents, we also have the oppor­tunity to deepen our rela­tion­ships with our friends by getting to meet their parents this weekend. We make a big deal about “meeting the parents” of boyfriends and girl­friends. Why should it be any dif­ferent with our friends’ parents? Parents Weekend pro­vides the atmos­phere for us to deepen our friend­ships, better under­stand one another, and have a good laugh at how similar our roommate and her mom are. 

Instead of com­plaining about parent-teacher con­fer­ences or grade reports, embrace Parents Weekend for its goal: building rela­tion­ships. You might even get a free dinner, if your folks aren’t here and you’re lucky enough to be treated by your roommate’s parents.