College administrators are reporting that some parents are getting so involved in their student’s college lives that they are actually impersonating their students, doing their schoolwork, and even offering to complete internships for them.
Officials say that this wacky trend has only grown worse in recent years, causing headaches for administrators and university presidents alike.
An administrator at a liberal arts college in the Northeast (who wishes to remain anonymous) reported that her phone has been blowing up with calls and texts from parents.
“Over the last two or three years it’s become unbearable,” she said. “I’ve had parents calling up and impersonating their children, asking questions that could have been easily asked by their kids. One lady didn’t even bother to disguise her Long Island soccer-mom voice.”
Some parents ask high-level school officials to practically babysit their students on campus.
“We have numerous parents asking if we can wake up their kids and walk them to class,” an assistant athletic director at a Connecticut college explained. “They ask for these things in all seriousness; there’s no, ‘I’m sorry to do this to you.’ I’ve seen a parent ask my associate if we can make sure their kid is taking their medication.”
While some blame the rising cost of tuition for giving parents an increased sense of ownership over their children’s education, instructional speaker Harlan Cohen blames the rise of smartphones as the main culprit. Students vent about their problems to their parents with a text or call, and parents feel entitled to get involved, often taking their concerns up the flagpole instead of letting their adult children take care of their own issues.
“Kids don’t have coping skills or communication skills to handle a conflict because they are constantly on their phones,” said one administrator. “We expect them to seek out their parents’ advice, but more importantly, they should be fighting their own battles.”
This embarrassing trend only bolsters millennials’ reputation as the snowflake generation. Unfortunately, as the phenomenon persists, it seems Generation Z isn’t any better.