The May 1st deadline for a final college decision is just around the corner — if your son or daughter hasn’t yet decided on a music school, here are 5 pointers for parents to help you survive the next few days!
It’s a mixed blessing to be accepted to more than one school. On the one hand, it’s great for your student’s self-confidence, and it may confer some bragging rights onto you as parents. On the other hand, it’s confusing and stressful.
1. Take a breath and regain perspective. Sure, the decision is important. But learning will take place and new doors will open wherever your child ends up going to school.
2. Letting your child “stew” is ok. It’s not easy to watch your child experience the angst of uncertainty, but it’s also important to allow them the space to do so. Uncertainty is a part of life, and as an adult and in the world of music, there will be plenty of it. Learning to cope with uncertainty is valuable and necessary.
3. This is not about you. Your child may not choose the school you would choose. This is about the life they’re here to live, not about yours. You did all you knew how to do to help get them to this point in time.
4. Sleep facilitates clarity. I remember how sleep-deprived my son was as May 1st approached. He had 8 amazing schools waiting for his decision, but between school and performances (not to mention late nights hanging out with friends), he was too exhausted to figure out where to spend the next four years of his life. A few days of sleeping in helped more than we would have imagined, and suddenly, on April 29th, his decision became clear.
5. Mistakes may be made. Be there to listen but don’t try to prevent what your child will learn from making a mistake — unless it’s truly life threatening (and it rarely is). In the event your child finds they made the wrong school choice, they can always consider transferring. In fact, it’s often easier to get into some schools as a transfer student especially if you’ve worked hard and shown yourself to be competent at the school where you’ve started out.
Good luck to you and your offspring!