In my student affairs work with first-generation college students and their families, I am frequently reminded of the Chinese Proverb,
Give a person a fish, and you feed them a day. Teach a person to fish, and you feed them for a lifetime.
Parents will call or email with questions regarding a program, service or special campus event. They are not seeking information for themselves; they are questions for their student. Although the intent is well meaning, I will generally invite parents to have their student contact me. My reasoning is that it is critically important for students to build their own networks of resources, on campus and in life. The “teach a person to fish” proverb is essential in all matters related to a college education. There is a lot to think about for an 18-year old in the transition to college. Parents and families need to set the teaching example, not just do the job for students.