Campus News

'Behind the Blue': Enhancing Student Success by Engaging With Parents and Families

LEXINGTON, Ky. (Sept. 20, 2021) — Making the transition to college can be an intimidating time not only for incoming undergraduate students, but also for families, as they seek to support their students from their earliest days on campus through graduation.

Embracing a multidimensional concept of family and the diversity of family structures, including families of origin and families of choice, the University of Kentucky Parent and Family Association invites parents, guardians, grandparents, spouses/partners and any other supportive people in the lives of UK students to join for free. The association strives to enhance student success by actively engaging parents and families as part of the larger university community through publications, programs and services. Their goal is to offer the best way to stay informed, get connected and find support for families and their students.

On this episode of "Behind the Blue," two members from UK’s Office for Student Success talk about their work with these families and students.

Nancy Stephens is the head of the New Student and Family Programs team, working with programs such as the K Week fall welcome week and the UK Parent and Family Association.

Nicki Jenkins is the senior program specialist for the Parent and Family Association, overseeing all day-to-day functions and coordinating events and programs.

Together they discuss the Parent and Family Association and the work they do, including UK’s Family Weekend.

"Behind the Blue" is available on iTunes, Google Play, Stitcher and Spotify. Become a subscriber to receive new episodes of “Behind the Blue” each week. UK’s latest medical breakthroughs, research, artists and writers will be featured, along with the most important news impacting the university.

For questions or comments about this or any other episode of "Behind the Blue," email or tweet your question with #BehindTheBlue. Transcripts for this or other episodes of "Behind the Blue" can be downloaded from the show’s blog page.

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As the state’s flagship, land-grant institution, the University of Kentucky exists to advance the Commonwealth. We do that by preparing the next generation of leaders — placing students at the heart of everything we do — and transforming the lives of Kentuckians through education, research and creative work, service and health care. We pride ourselves on being a catalyst for breakthroughs and a force for healing, a place where ingenuity unfolds. It's all made possible by our people — visionaries, disruptors and pioneers — who make up 200 academic programs, a $476.5 million research and development enterprise and a world-class medical center, all on one campus.   

In 2022, UK was ranked by Forbes as one of the “Best Employers for New Grads” and named a “Diversity Champion” by INSIGHT into Diversity, a testament to our commitment to advance Kentucky and create a community of belonging for everyone. While our mission looks different in many ways than it did in 1865, the vision of service to our Commonwealth and the world remains the same. We are the University for Kentucky.