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Student Life – Parents FAQ

Q. How do I add my email to the College’s parent email list?

A. To add, remove or your change your email on the parent email list, please email records@providence.edu, and include your name, your student’s name, and your student’s Providence College email address and class year.

Q. Should my student find a roommate on their own or go “random” through the residence life roommate matching program?

A. We recommend that students allow our housing system software (eRezLife) to do the roommate matching. Students complete their housing application through eRezLife and the program takes into account many preferences that can have an impact on roommate compatibility. While students may think that somebody they meet at an event or through social media may be a good roommate, the program typically does a much better job of matching for living compatibility. Remember that your student does not need to be best friends with their roommate, the goal is to place your student in a situation that will be most conducive to their personal and academic success. If a student prefers, however, they do have the option to request specific roommates by listing their information on their housing application.

Q. When do first year student housing assignments come out?

A. Housing and roommate assignments are distributed via email to students’ Providence College e-mail addresses in early August. We are unable to provide assignments over the phone or by any means other than email and we cannot provide this information prior to distribution of the emails.

Q. Do you provide information about what to bring/not bring for residence hall rooms?

A. Yes, please visit our “What To Bring” website.

Q. What happens if my son/daughter doesn’t get along with their roommate?

A. The Residence Life & Housing staff is well-trained to handle roommate conflicts. While each situation is unique, your child should first reach out to their RA, who will help to mediate the situation. We also have professional staff living in the residence halls to assist when necessary. Please encourage your student to contact the Residence Life and Housing Office (401.865.2392) or stop in to Slavin 105) if they are struggling with a roommate situation.

Q. Can my student bring a car to campus?

A. On-campus parking is available for commuter students, and residential junior and senior students. The application process takes place each spring. Please visit the Campus Parking website for more information.

Q.  My student says there is nothing to do on campus. 

A. In a typical year, over 500 events are sponsored by clubs/organizations and Student Activities & Cultural Programming. Some of the events include festivals, dances, lectures, concerts, class nights, trips, and more.  Students receive the Morning Mail each weekday which provides information about the many events happening on campus. They can also learn about events via social media, from posters throughout campus, in the campus newspaper, and table tents in the dining halls. Please encourage your student to follow @PCFriarLife on Instagram along with the Instagram accounts of clubs/organizations of interest. 

Q. How do I help my student get involved?

A. With over 100 clubs on campus, there is something for everyone.  Encourage your student to attend the Involvement Festivals hosted by the Office of Student Activities & Cultural Programming at the beginning of each semester.  Each of the clubs and organizations are represented and students can join on the spot or learn about the selection process for joining.  We are prepared to host this fall’s fair either in person or virtually as needed.  Students may also learn about clubs/orgs through our webpage or our app –  PC Central. Your student is also welcome to stop into Student Activities & Cultural Programming to meet with a staff member who can assist in connecting your student with representatives from club/organizations of interest.

Q. What club sports do you offer?

A. The Department of Rec Sports supports more than 20 club sports. Learn more about the available programs on their Club Sports website.

Q.  When should my student start working with the Center for Career Education & Professional Development?

A. The Center for Career Education & Professional Development can help students at ANY point in their PC career, with things like choosing a major, career exploration, finding internships and full-time jobs, and the career basics: resumes, cover letters, and practice interviews.

Q. If I am worried about my student, is it appropriate for me to call you?

A.  Know that some adjustment and angst is a normal part of the college experience. Definitely in the first year, but also in subsequent years.  You know your student best. Are they venting, or are they demonstrating truly concerning behavior? Whenever you feel uncomfortable, please don’t hesitate to call the Dean of Students Office. If things are getting difficult for your student – they are showing signs of mental stress, are not eating, attending class, etc – we have a CARE team that will intervene and connect them with resources.     

Q. Do you have advice about how I can talk to my student about drinking and alcohol?

A. Research shows that having an authentic, personal conversation with your student just prior to starting college can have a positive effect on your son or daughter’s attitude towards alcohol. Please consider exploring the resources on this page for advice about how to have a conversation about alcohol with your son or daughter.

Q. Will I be notified if something happens to my child?

A.  If there is an emergency situation involving your child, and we are aware of it, we will call you. Depending on the severity, we will call in the middle of the night or wait until the morning. For more information, please see our Parental Notification Policy.

Q. How do privacy laws impact what you will tell me about my student?

A.  Know that you can always share with us whatever information you believe is necessary and pertinent for us to provide care and assistance to your student.  The Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA) impacts what we are able to share back with you, but FERPA does have exceptions for drugs, alcohol, and emergencies.

The Student Health Center has additional regulations based on HIPAA.  If the Health Center staff deems a student’s condition an emergency (life threatening) and the student cannot give permission for us to contact their family, we will take it upon ourselves to notify the family immediately. If you want access to non-emergency health information about your student, your student will need to sign a HIPPA release at the time of their visit in the Health Center (note that this needs to be done for each non-emergency case).

Q. How do I know if I need the College’s health insurance for my child?

A. Call the number on the back of your card, and ask if they will cover your student in Rhode Island.  If yes, you need to opt out of the College’s health insurance. You must opt-out prior to July 1st to avoid being billed.  Please visit our health insurance web page for more information.

Q. What is your immunization policy?

A. We follow the guidelines set by the Rhode Island Department of Health (RIDOH).  Students must turn in a record of their immunizations before arriving on campus for their first year. Please visit our Immunizations Requirements web page for more information.

We also ask all parents and guardians to encourage their student to get a flu shot.  There are flu shot clinics on campus every fall. 

Q. Where do I find a copy of the health record form?

A. The health record form is available here.

Q. Is there a cost for appointments at the Health Center or Counseling Center?

A. For full-time, day school, undergraduate students, there is no charge for appointments with Student Health staff or Counseling Center staff.  Students are responsible for all costs associated with off-campus referrals, prescriptions, X-rays, and lab testing.

Q. What happens if my student gets sick at night or on weekends when the Health Center is closed?

A. Residence Life has somebody on-call 24/7, who can assist your student and help them identify what type of help they need.  Whenever the Health Center is closed, we have EMTs on-campus who are on-call to treat any illness or injury that needs immediate attention.

Q.  How do you keep students with food allergies or special dietary needs safe?

A. Dining Services works diligently to address students’ specific needs, especially those with food allergies, Celiac disease, or special dietary needs. They meet one-on-one with any student who has individual dining needs to ensure that the dining experience is safe, delicious, and social.  Please visit our Nutrition and Food Allergies web page for more information.

We do encourage all students with allergies to wear a medic alert bracelet.  Many of our students like the contemporary bracelet options offered by Bling Jewelry.

Q. What are the main reasons students seek help from the Personal Counseling Center?

A. The top reason for visit at the Counseling Center is anxiety. Other top reasons include: academic concerns, substance use, trauma, eating disorders, and identity issues. Students don’t need a referral or diagnosable illness to make an appointment to talk with a Personal Counseling staff member. First appointments can be made by calling or by stopping into the Center in Lower Bedford Hall. Urgent appointments are accommodated as soon as possible, often same-day.

Q. My student has a disability and needs an academic/parking/transportation/residential/dining accommodation. Who do I contact?

A. Please visit our Disability Accommodations website for more information about accommodations.

Q. My student needs help with….

A. As part of their transition to independent living, we try to encourage students to practice self-advocacy and problem solving. If your student has a question about academic or campus life, please encourage them to check out these resources as a first-step.

For questions about what to bring to campus and life in our residence halls, please visit the Residence Life: Living on Campus FAQ page.

For questions about the first year and transfer student orientation program, please visit the Orientation FAQ page.

Providence College also has an office dedicated to supporting parents – please be sure to visit the PC Parent Program website to learn more about the comprehensive resources and programs the College has to support parents and families.