Virtual Family Weekend
Virtual Family Weekend
Vol. 17 Edition 3  |  September 08, 2020
NAU student and family member participating in a virtual session..

Parent-to-Parent: Virtual Family Weekend

Dear Parent,
I invite you to join us in celebrating virtual Family Weekend 2020. This year, in accordance with the exceptional lengths to which we are going to mitigate the risks to our Lumberjack family and the surrounding community, we have made the decision to hold all Family Weekend events virtually, rather than in-person.
The Office of the Dean of Students and the Office of Leadership, Engagement, Activities, and Peer Mentoring have worked to plan events that align with guidance from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and local state and health agencies. You can look forward to experiencing a little piece of our Lumberjack community from the comfort of your own home.
We are excited to share our schedule of events on Friday, September 11 on the family weekend website. Some events will require pre-registration, so check in with your Lumberjack in advance to decide which events are a good fit for your family.

Shannon W. Clark

Assistant Dean of Students
NAU student Facetimeing family while on their way to class.

Help Us Keep the NAU Community Safe and Healthy this Semester

Nikki Meline, Health Promotion
We all have a role to play in keeping the NAU community as safe and healthy as possible in the coming months. We really are all in this together! Here are a few things that you can do as a parent or family member of a student retuning to campus as the Fall 2020 semester commences:
  • Set clear expectations for your student. In addition to what NAU expects of all students on campus this semester, talk to your student about what you, as their parent or family member, expect them to do/not do when it comes to COVID-19 risk reduction, and check in with them on those things throughout the semester. These conversations are more impactful than you might think!
  • Model safe and healthy behaviors. If you are following the advice from public health experts to wear a mask, physically distance yourself from others, and wash your hands frequently, your student is more likely to do the same.
  • Create a plan with your student for what they will do if they are exposed to someone with COVID-19 and/or test positive for COVID-19 and need to self-quarantine or self-isolate. Make sure your student has things like acetaminophen, tissues, cough/throat lozenges, soup, and plenty of water on hand.
  • Encourage your student to minimize their trips home (or anywhere else!) this semester. In lieu of in-person visits, schedule time regularly to connect as a family via FaceTime or Google Hangouts. Use this time to check in on your student’s mental health.
  • Encourage your student to make their physical and mental health a priority. Positive health behaviors like getting enough sleep, eating well, exercising, and limiting substance use can help boost immunity. Explore Health Promotion’s virtual health & wellness programs available to students this semester, which are designed to empower students to make healthy choices.
98% of NAU students believe success comes from hard work.

The Jacks are Back to School

Aaron Cirzan, Academic Success Centers

The difference in the level of rigor between high school and college can be a surprise to new students, especially for students whose academic success has come easily in the past. NAU classes will challenge students in new ways, and these strategies can help students understand the value of hard work:
  • Adopt a growth mindset (ex: I may not have been a good writer in the past, but I can develop that skill here at NAU).
  • Focus on actions, not perceived ability.
  • Talk to tutors, SI leaders, and mentors about how much they study.
  • Stay motivated by keeping career goals in mind.
Here are more ways that the Academic Success Centers can support your student’s academic goals online and in person!

Get to Know Counseling Services

Megan Gavin, Counseling Services
Counseling Services is excited to offer a full range of services via telehealth during fall 2020, including individual, couples, and group counseling; daytime and after-hours crisis services; and, perhaps most importantly for parents and families, consultation regarding students of concern. Further, starting this semester, Counseling Services has expanded services to NAU statewide and in-state online students. While in-person-only services had previously made this expansion impossible, telehealth has allowed for increased accessibility to counseling resources for the NAU community.
Counseling Services staff and trainees aim to provide inclusive, ethical, high-quality care and support to all students in need. In that spirit, to better understand what happens when a student initiates services at Counseling Services, please consult this diagram of a typical path to care:
NAU Counseling Services Path to Care
Louie the Lumberjack encourages engagement virtually.

Learn More About LEAP

Joey Ruiz, LEAP
The Office of Leadership, Engagement, Activities, and Peer Mentoring (LEAP) creates intentional student experiences. Through our activities, events, involvement opportunities, and programs, we provide an atmosphere for students to grow as well-rounded leaders. The LEAP Office encourages students to enhance their collegiate experience through active and engaged participation. This is accomplished through purpose-driven programming that includes educational and cultural programs, lectures, conferences, socials, and other interactive opportunities that complement the educational mission of Northern Arizona University.
Check out LEAP’s website to explore leadership, engagement, and activities for your Lumberjack.
NAU is committed to the health and safety of students, faculty, and staff and follows CDC’s recommended guidelines on COVID-19. Not every photo in this e-newsletter will precisely represent these guidelines, as we aim to accurately present the NAU experience for you and balance that need with imagery that reflects the COVID-19 policies we have in place. Visit for our current campus health safety guidelines.
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