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JPW allows parents to experience campus life

Molly Madden | Monday, February 22, 2010

Notre Dame juniors spent the past three days with their parents experiencing everything that the University has to offer during the annual Junior Parents Weekend.

Now that the weekend of food, events and bonding has concluded, juniors can sit back and reflect on the experiences and memories that they shared with their parents over the course of the weekend.

“Junior Parents Weekend was nice because there was a lot of stuff to do,” junior Ryan Bahniuk said. “Everyone seemed to really participate in the events and were really excited about it.”

The weekend had several events for the juniors and their parents to attend, including the Opening Gala Friday, the President’s Dinner Saturday and various dorm and college events where parents could have a more personal experience with the University of Notre Dame and with their children.

“Junior Parents Weekend is really organized and is better than your parents just coming up on a random weekend,” junior Michael Bohnert said. “I was able to show my parents what I’ve done and my accomplishments in a more personal way than just telling them scores.”

Junior Jackie Merola also said Junior Parent’s Weekend was more personal and allowed her parents to meet people directly involved in her education.

“The weekend allowed my parents opportunities that they wouldn’t have if they just came up to visit any other weekend,” she said. “We went to an event at the College of Science and my parents got to meet my advisor, which is something they wouldn’t normally be able to do.”

Bohnert said Junior Parents Weekend is also a chance for students to meet their friends’ parents.

“It’s really wonderful to meet the parents of your friends,” he said. “You get to know more about your friends — the stuff they wouldn’t tell you personally. It’s great to meet the people who are responsible for the way your friends turned out.”

Merola agreed that having events that involved interactions between the juniors and their parents created memorable experiences that brought the class together.

“On Sunday we got to go to the brunch and me and my parents really enjoyed that,” she said. “It was great to have the entire Class of 2011 and their parents all in one place.”

While the juniors said they enjoyed the official events that the University planned for the weekend, many students and their parents spent quality time together in less traditional ways.

Junior Erin Semler said having more social experiences with her parents during Junior Parents Weekend allowed her parents to have a greater insight into her life outside of the classroom.

“My parents now have a better perspective of what college life is like,” she said.