The Scarlet & Black

The Independent Student News Site of Grinnell College

The Scarlet & Black

The Scarlet & Black

Parents’ weekend runs smoothly

This past weekend, parents from all over the United States and even from countries as far as the Netherlands and India traveled to Grinnell for the 62nd annual Parents’ Weekend. Since the first Parents’ Day in 1949, the event has traditionally been held at the end of September or the beginning of October.

“We were pleased with the outcome of Parents’ Weekend. The weather was perfect, we had over 650 people attend,” said Assistant Director of Alumni Relations Daniel McCue. According to McCue, 658 parents pre-registered, and more came without signing up. This continues the trend of growth for Parents’ Weekend from previous years.

Parents from over 32 states attended Parents’ Weekend. Iowa was the most represented, followed by Illinois and Minnesota.

“Parents often only see Grinnell when they drop off their students for NSO or when they come for commencement,” McCue said. “Parents’ weekend is an opportunity for parents to see the college when it’s alive. It gives a snapshot of what Grinnell is like.”

During the course of the weekend, parents were able to attend various athletic events such as football or soccer games, meet the new President Raynard Kington, visit the observatory and attend concerts. Most importantly, the weekend provided parents with the opportunity to see their kids once college has started.

“When we dropped [Stephanie] off it was stressful, but now things have settled down,” said Terri Port, mother of Stephanie Port ’14.

Even those familiar with Grinnell found the experience provided another perspective.

“We live in town, so we’ve obviously been to the campus before,” said Susan Gallo, mother of Chris Gallo ’14. “But now we see it as parents.”

But Parents’ Weekend is not only an opportunity for the parents of first-years to see how their kids are settling in at college.

“There was a significant number of freshman parents, but a surprising number of upperclassmen parents attended, more than you might think,” McCue said.

“We’ve been to Grinnell before, we had another daughter here,” said Irene Cesa, mother of Laura Cesa ’11, at the Science Poster Session in Noyce last Saturday. “We really love Grinnell a lot. We are pleased, especially with the academic preparation.”

It is not only the atmosphere of the college that parents enjoyed about the weekend but also the chance to meet and exchange experiences and opinions with other parents of Grinnell students from all over the United States.

“Parents’ Weekend is really nice because you have different events such as the Poster Session, but also because you meet other parents from all over the country,” said Wesley Andersen, father of Kathy Andersen ’13.

While parents enjoyed the weekend, some students had to get used to having their parents around at college.

“It’s a little discombobulating,” Stephanie Port said.  “I really like seeing my parents, but it’s strange.”

Generally though, students agree that Parents’ Weekend provides a good opportunity to show their parents what their life at Grinnell is like once NSO is over and classes start.

“It’s nice to see them, they can see what I am doing here,” said Chris Re-Scherer ’14. “It’s easier to show them what Dag[orhir] is than explaining it.”

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