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[Fresh] FRESH@NEWS: Parents Weekend 2014

Our interview today is with Dr. Thomas Mogan, Director of Villanova’s Office of Student Development. One of his many responsibilities is supervising Parents Weekend.

Fresh@News: Tom, Parents Weekend is just a few days away! Can you tell us a little about the weekend?

Tom Mogan: Parents Weekend will take place on September 19 – 21. This is a great opportunity for family and friends to visit the campus and to learn about the Villanova Community.

Fresh@News: For most of our readers, this will be their first Villanova Parents Weekend, and for most it will be the first time they have seen their son or daughter since they said goodbye at New Student Orientation.  Can you tell us a little bit what to expect?

Tom Mogan: The first thing to say is: be ready for anything!  There are as many different experiences as there are students.  Some parents will be amazed by the changes and growth they have seen even in a few weeks.  Many of our resident freshman are already saying “I’m going home now” when they mean that they are returning to their residence hall.  Some already have a dozen new best friends, have joined some activities, are getting on top of their course work, and are enjoying themselves.  At the same time, some of the students are still finding their way, and may be struggling with not having made the kind of social connections they were hoping for, feeling homesick, being overwhelmed by their courses, or not getting along with their roommate.  The only real advice I can give you is to say that it is all fairly normal right now, so expect a lot of changes in the first few weeks, in any direction! 

Fresh@News: Is there a lot happening on campus for parents and students to do?

Tom Mogan: I think our visitors will have a great time.  One of the things we try to do on this weekend is to showcase our students' talents.  From athletic events to the Parents University sessions to the Music Activities Showcase, you’ll see that the Villanova community has a wealth of talent among its faculty, staff and most importantly, its students. 

Fresh@News: What events would you recommend to parents of new students?

Tom Mogan: The weekend is designed so parents and family members can pick and choose from a variety of receptions, lectures, and events. Parent University Sessions offer a number of workshops where parents and family members can meet campus administrators and faculty members and learn about relevant issues that face Villanova students. Topics include: alcohol use on campus, choosing a major and the effects of social media on your student just to name a few! Please check out the Parents' website www.parents.villanova.edu for more details on these programs.

Fresh@News: Is Parents Weekend just for the parents?

Tom Mogan: Not at all! We invite all family members (aunts, uncles, grandparents and siblings) to participate in the weekend.

Fresh@News: What types of events are going on that you think other family members would be interested in attending?

Tom Mogan: On Friday night, we will be hosting LateNite at Villanova - Family Style! This will take place in the Connelly Center from 7:00p.m. - 10:00 p.m.. This will be a chance for family members to experience a typical weekend night at Villanova! The LateNite at Villanova program offers entertainment for students every Friday and Saturday night in the Connelly Center. We've decided to tailor this night's entertainment to the whole family! Featured will be the a capella groups from Music Activities and the movie Maleficent.  Free admission includes entertainment, soft drinks, and desserts.

On Saturday evening the Campus Activities Team is pleased to present “An Evening with Kevin Spacey”. The Academy-Award winning actor will visit Villanova to give an insightful, inspirational and humorous talk on his life, his work and the creative process. He will also participate in an interactive Q &A with the audience. 

Fresh@News: That sounds great. And what about for the sports enthusiasts among us?

Tom Mogan: There are a few athletics events to choose from on this weekend. On Friday, the womens soccer team is hosting Towson and the womens field hockey team will play Delaware.  On Saturday, the football team takes the field against James Madison at 12:30 p.m., and the mens soccer team hosts Monmouth University at 1pm. And on Sunday, the womens field hockey team will be playing St. Joseph’s. To purchase football tickets to cheer on the Wildcats, please call the Athletics Ticket Office at 610-519-4100.

Fresh@News: It sounds like the weekend is full of great events.

Tom Mogan: And I only mentioned a few, so make sure to check out the full schedule at www.parents.villanova.edu to see all of the other things going on throughout the weekend. Some events require registration, so please don't miss out and register now! If you haven't received the brochure in the mail, you can access the schedule on the Parents' Website or call our office at 610.519.4210.

Fresh@News: Do you have any words of wisdom for our parents of first year students who will be experiencing Parents Weekend for the first time?

Tom Mogan: My best advice would be to try to experience as much of Villanova as you can, and to let your son or daughter show you the things that have become important to him or her while you are here. Also remember to save a little time to just simply be with your son or daughter. They are still very much in a time of transition and it will be important for you to gauge their needs over the course of the weekend. Most importantly, just have fun and enjoy your time together!




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