I just attended two days of mandatory parent orientation whilst my older child attended his two days of freshman orientation. May I just say "They didn't have that when I went to college!" My parents helped me unload my stuff on moving in day, hugged me goodbye and never looked back. I found myself surrounded by people happily screaming back at the cruise director style program director. Large groups of people in a frenzied fervor screaming "When I say UA, you say You Know, when I say Purple, you say Gold, when I say Great, you say Dane!" You can just imagine how I loved that.
I learned about all of the services available to my child - counseling, medical, financial, social, and yes, even academic advisement. His ID card is a true sign of big brother watching you - it is his room key and it holds all of the information about his food plan and it acts as a debit card for snacks, the bookstore, copies at the library, etc. I assume that with that card they can access his medical information, his grades, and so forth. I'm happy to say you're allowed to punch a hole in it because that may be the only way he keeps it for more than a day.
I have my very own parent liaison (who I share with thousands of other parental units) whom I can call with any concerns and she will direct me to the correct department. At the health center my child can get treated for colds, strep throat, the flu, chlamydia, and pregnancy. They sell condoms - 175 for six bucks and if they don't work, you can get the morning after pill there, too. Not to worry about cost - they'll put it on his bill and I can pay for it electronically with E-Pay. In fact, I can add money to his account any time from the comfort of my home and he will have instant access to it. Lucky me.
I learned that I can bring him to school on August 22nd no earlier than 9 AM. They recommended NOON, but realized that no one is going to listen to them. At 4:30 there will be a family bar-b-q and at 6:30 they would like to see us all go bye-bye! He'll already know who his suitemates are and will, presumably, have been in contact with his roommate for several weeks, ironing out who will bring what. This is extremely important since their rooms are about 8x10. At least he won't be tripled since he'll be in the Honors Dorms.
Now, I naiively assumed that my son was also getting all of this same information about who to see when and for what, but noooo. He was playing team building games (kill me now, mom), enduring the same mind numbing chants as me, and attending lectures on sexual assault and alcohol abuse. I'm sorry, but he's not going to need that. What he needs to know is where to go when he loses his room key and how to find his classes.