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The 10 ways to survive Parents' Weekend

With Parents’ Weekend coming up, you're probably excited to see your family, but dreading having to introduce them to your newfound friends.  Read these rules and reflections from Parents’ Weekend veterans and we promise you'll survive.

Photo by Gillian Freedman/GavelMedia

1.  Do go to the Boston Pops Concert – because this is the only year you will go (unless your mother is obsessed with the Pops, like mine).  The Pops are amazing to see in person and it's really cool that they come to BC to play every year.  But after the first time, it gets pretty old; it's a long concert and cuts into going out that night.  So go this year, and enjoy it with the knowledge that you'll never have to go again.

2.  Speaking of going out, Parents’ Weekend can be pretty dead for freshmen because students are preoccupied with their families.  Take it in stride and enjoy the down time by eating some extra dessert at dinner rather than trying to make it back to the dorms in time to go out.

3.  If you do happen to find a party to go to, take it easy.  Even if you have super-cool parents who don’t care that you drink, it still isn’t okay to show up to Saturday’s football game hungover—or worse, at brunch on Sunday when your Mom expects you to gobble down at least six pancakes.  Do yourself a favor by showing them that you are smart enough around alcohol to avoid having to wear sunglasses indoors while they’re visiting.

4.  Don’t let your parents go with you to class on Friday.  Otherwise, the boy sitting next to you will hit on you in front of your dad, who will later mock you for it (true story).  Also, your dad will ask the professor questions in front of your 300-person Microeconomic Principles class in Devlin 008 (again, true story).

5.  Know that if your parents insist on going with you to class, you won’t be the only one, and it won’t be the end of the world (although it might seem like it at the time).  No one remembers that incident except for myself, my dad, and maybe the boy who hit on me.

6.  Having younger siblings come stay with you is cool.  Having younger siblings who come stay with you and drink more than all your friends combined is not.

7.  That said, do not act like a parent.  Just cheerfully remind your beer-chugging seventeen-year-old brother that he has to get up at 7:30 for brunch the next morning.

8.  If your parents want to go to all the parent activities that are available, let them—they won’t want to go again in subsequent years.  And if they don’t want to go, don’t worry that they’re missing anything.

9.  If your family can’t make it to Parents' Weekend, don’t worry about being left out.  More likely than not, someone else’s parents will take you out to dinner, and you should never, ever turn down a free non-dining hall meal (that’s a rule for life, not just Parents’ Weekend).

10.  Above all, enjoy the weekend.  It might be stressful having your parents around, but remember that they just want to see how awesome BC is and how great you’re doing after a couple weeks of being here.  If you show them that, everyone will have a great time.  Plus, everyone is embarrassed by his or her family at least some of the time, so if you’re worried about that, your friends probably are too.

Name: Jillian Timko
School, major and year: Arts and Sciences, International Studies, 2014
Hometown: Basking Ridge, NJ
What makes the Gavel so BANGin’? I love the Gavel because it’s so new. We are still figuring out who we are as an organization and how far we can go. While this presents us with a clear set of challenges, it’s really fun to try different things and build our own identity.
You have 24 hours to give prospective students a tour of BC and convince them to enroll. How do you spend the day?
First, I would take them on an actual tour of the campus—it’s beautiful and deserves to be shown off. Then I would take them to a football tailgate, a hockey game, and to Marathon Monday. And we would eat breakfast, lunch, and dinner at Hillside – after an egg sandwich, a Panini, and a cheeseburger, who wouldn’t want to go to BC?
If you could go back in time and give yourself a pep talk the night before you moved into BC as a freshman, what is the most important piece of advice that you would give to your former self?
I would tell myself to keep pushing to meet new people and try new things. It’s easy to get stuck in a groove you’re comfortable with, but you should never limit yourself like that—the people at BC and the school itself have so much to offer.
What is your favorite study spot on campus?
A classroom in Gasson, or the booths on the first floor of O’Neill.
What is your go-to meal at Late Night?
Usually mozzarella sticks, sometimes pizza…
What is the #1 most played song on your iTunes?
Love and Memories by OAR
What is the best Halloween costume that you have ever worn?
I was a gumball machine, along with our lovely editor-in-chief, and we rocked it.
If you could only eat at one restaurant for the rest of your life, which would you choose?
There’s this Italian restaurant called Bolu in my hometown. It’s always absolutely delicious, and it has enough variety on its menu to get me through the rest of my life.
If you could befriend the main characters from any TV show or movie, who would you choose and why?
The characters on How I Met Your Mother. Mainly so I could experience the joy of high-fiving Barney Stinson all the time.