By Emily Glory Peters
Family involvement is a secret ingredient of Scripps’ intimate campus culture, with parents serving as mentors, presenting on panels, hiring students, hosting career exploration treks, assembling care packages and so much more. Yet some families may not be aware of the many resources available to them and their students—a knowledge gap the new Scripps 101 series is seeking to fill.
“We’ve built [the series] off of the town hall meetings with parents we typically hold during New Student Programs and Orientation (NSPO) each September. Those were very basic, with parents getting a run down on how move-in would go,” explains Digital Engagement Specialist Delanie Pacheco.
The Office of Parent Engagement and Philanthropy saw a chance to roll out an expanded suite of info sessions to make it possible for all parents—not just first-year families—to get a behind-the-scenes understanding of the student experience. Scripps hosted the fully virtual Scripps 101 series in live sessions over the last several months.
“We open this up to everyone, including transfer students’ families, to get them in front of other parts of Scripps that they might not see,” says Pacheco. “Each Scripps 101 session is hosted by a different department head at Scripps, sometimes joined by current students who can offer parents their unique perspective.”
All sessions were recorded and posted on Scripps’ Families page online so they can be accessible year-round. Featured departments have included the Laspa Center for Leadership, Parent Engagement and Philanthropy, Career Planning & Resources, Student Accounts and Payment, Financial Aid, and Study Abroad and Global Education (SAGE)—the last a particular favorite of families and students, Pacheco notes.
Attendees and viewers also have access to presentation materials that they can download for future reading. Ultimately, all Scripps 101 content will be available on Olive Grove, the College’s exclusive social networking platform for the Scripps community. Families can sign up for their own free Olive Grove account at any time as yet another way to forge ties with other parents, alums, staff, and faculty. Fresh Scripps 101 content will be forthcoming based on survey feedback from parent attendees of the live sessions.
Rather than serving as a stand-alone resource, Pacheco says, the Scripps 101 series augments other parent engagement opportunities such as regional welcome receptions and peer calls where parents can connect with others in the Scripps ecosystem. Each touchpoint has the same goal for families: to foster connection and deepen understanding of their student’s “home away from home.”
“Parents want to encourage their students, even though they’re young adults, to take advantage of everything at Scripps—but without being too on top of them,” says Pacheco. “The beauty of Scripps 101 is that it helps them create that balance by giving families a front row seat into some of the coolest and most important corners of campus and the people who run them. It helps put them at ease and gives them a place to learn and ask questions about what it’s like to be a Scripps student.”