Let them fly

Before he joined Collegewise, where he now spends his days guiding kids through the college application process, counselor Tom Barry worked in admissions at Colorado College and earned a master’s in education from Stanford. So he knows a lot about college admissions. But he’s also taken the usual crash course in parenting since becoming a father himself last year. And in his Collegewise bio video released yesterday, I thought Tom offered up some advice to parents that’s both sage and empathetic.

“In some ways the college admissions process feels like a referendum on whether or not that decision to play in the sandbox on a random Tuesday when they were three was the right choice or not. But one thing working with students year after year, and working on the admissions side, has taught me is that no one decision is going to make or break this process. And it should be an exciting process. It should be fun to watch your child grow and make these decisions on their own. And of course, [you will] be there to guide them and work with them along the way. But it’s not about the parent anymore. You’ve set them up to thrive. And this is where they just let their wings go and fly.”

Do the hard work to set them up. Then do the often harder work of stepping back and letting them fly.