Parents & Families In the Loop
Autumn 2007 | Volume 1, Issue 1

Partners in Your Student's Journey

President EatonParents are vitally important to us at Seattle Pacific University. We view you as partners with us in the educational journey that your student is taking.

Because of that, I'm delighted to send you this first issue of an e-newsletter designed exclusively for the parents and families of our students. Here's a sampling of things you will find in each issue:

  • Upcoming campus events you may wish to attend
  • Quick tips on how to help your student succeed (academically, spiritually, financially, and more)
  • Interviews with faculty and staff members who are important resources for your student

I hope that you will find this newsletter — and our new website for parents — to be helpful to you as you navigate this new territory. As always, I welcome your questions and comments. Please feel free to contact me at

Thank you again for the trust you have placed in us and for the time you are taking to learn more about the important things that are happening here at this great university.

President Philip W. Eaton

Financial Literacy 101

Saving for CollegeResearch shows that students who understand the financial commitments and decisions they encounter while earning their degrees are more likely to graduate on time and with less debt.

At Seattle Pacific University, the office of Student Financial Services (SFS) provides quarterly information sessions in financial literacy. These seminars help SPU students gain the vital set of skills they need to handle their present financial obligations and their future financial planning. Sessions for the 2007-08 academic year include:

  • Building a foundation for a solid financial future
  • The importance of building and maintaining good credit
  • How to protect financial identity

Each spring, SFS also offers a student loan information (exit) session for graduating and interested student-loan borrowers. The session provides students with information on repayment, covers their borrower rights and responsibilities, and has a question-and-answer period with student-loan professionals.

For more coverage on financial literacy, visit the Parents and Families website.

Refugees for a Day

Refugees for a DayOn November 10, 2007, SPU students experienced a bit of what it's like to be refugees entering the United States.

As part of the Refugee Project, a program sponsored by World Relief and SPU's Urban Involvement (UI), 15 SPU students were assigned "identities" as refugees. Next, the students proceeded through different stations in Seattle's International District that represented everything from medical appointments to a U.S. State Department visit.

"Depending on their stories and how they told them, the students received or were denied certain services," says Owen Sallee, coordinator for UI.

The students ended the day by eating dinner with actual refugee families from areas such as Somalia and Burundi. This allowed the students to listen to family members talk about their own experiences.

"The program puts theory into practical experience," says Sallee. "It helps students engage and empathize with a new culture."

Find out more about the Refugee Project and discover what students learned.

Secrets to Academic Success

Niki Amarantides, director of the Center for Learning, offers the following tips to help your student get the most from his or her time at SPU:

"Going to college involves our bodies, minds, and spirits. Success in college should include strategies for all three areas. Examples for students to consider include:

  • Eat. Take protein snacks to class and drink lots of water throughout the day. Trips to the school's gym can also help.
  • Pray. Go to Chapel or join group. Take time to reflect on life, and pray about purpose and direction.
  • Relate. Take time to build relationships, including with an SPU staff or faculty member who will be available to help when challenges occur."

For practical tips you can share with your students (and maybe use yourself), visit the Parents and Families website.