• Beth & Tim Manners

No Place Like Home: College & Personal Growth

Updated: Sep 21, 2019

“For previous generations, college was a decisive break from parental supervision; guidance and support needed to come from peers and f

rom within,” write A. Douglas Stone and Mary Schwab-Stone in The New York Times. “In the past two decades, however, continued family contact and dependence, thanks to cellphones, email and social media, has increased significantly — some parents go so far as to help with coursework.”


Stone is a physics professor at Yale and Schwab-Stone a retired psychiatrist at the Yale Child Study Center. “Instead of promoting the idea of college as a transition from the shelter of the family to adult autonomy and responsibility,” they write, “universities like Yale have given in to the implicit notion that they should provide the equivalent of the home environment … But college is a different kind of community than a family, and its primary job is education of the student and adaptation to independent community living.”


They conclude: “Every college discussion about community values, social climate and behavior should also include recognition of the developmental importance of student autonomy and self-regulation, of the necessary tension between safety and self-discovery.”

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