uow living - Information for Parents & Guardians
The choice of accommodation for families when a son or daughter, brother or sister leaves home is a crucial one for a successful beginning to University life and study.
Especially for Parents
This section of our website has been written especially for parents and other family members. The staff in Accommodation Services and the Residences will be happy to discuss any concerns you may have, and encourage parents, guardians and family members to take an active interest in life at the Residences and the wider community of the University of Wollongong.
The residences offer an opportunity for students to live in a community that provides them with academic support, pastoral care, a wide range of interesting programs, and, where catered, meals each day.
Your son or daughter will be entering into a new and exciting phase of their lives when they leave the family home and elect to attend University and live in the Residences. They will meet a variety of people from vastly different social and cultural backgrounds, people with differing academic status, and different life views. Coupled with living in a new city or country, this can sometimes prove a little daunting.
Parents and guardians should be reassured that staff in the residences have many years of experience in assisting new students to assimilate into their new environment. Homesickness, missing the family, confusion about University life, where are the doctors or dentist, where is the nearest supermarket, where is the nearest church, how can I change my foreign currency and open a bank account – these are all issues that our staff have dealt with many times. Parents and guardians should feel free to contact the Student Residence Manager (SRM) if they have any concerns at all about their son or daughter. Each residence website has information about their staff.
No problem is considered too small – it may be that you've not received a telephone call for some time and simply want to make contact. We are more than happy to pass along a message to “phone home”.
Safety & Security
The University of Wollongong places a very high emphasis on the safety and security of students. The University and the Residences have rules and regulations regarding safety and security that cover an entire range of issues. These regulations are set down in the Handbook of each residence, and students should familiarise themselves with the content. A copy of each Handbook can be found on each residence website.
In addition to the guidelines provided to students, each residence has senior students (called Resident Assistants or Tutors) who assist the SRM. These senior residents are able to deal with a variety of situations that typically arise and are trained in a wide range of areas, including First Aid, cultural diversity and conflict resolution skills. This ensures students have someone to offer assistance should they have any concerns.
As the residences are adult communities, students are encouraged to be aware of their surroundings and their peers. Residents are encouraged to take normal, commonsense precautions such as keeping doors and windows closed and locked when they are absent from their rooms, and to report any suspicious or potentially dangerous occurrences to staff or University security, Accommodation Services work in conjunction with the University Security to ensure that all precautions are taken in relation to student safety both on campus and in the residences, for more information about University Security and their services please see this Additionally, students have telephone access to residence staff and University security 24 hours, 7 days per week.
All rooms and units are equipped with thermal smoke detectors.
Well Being & Support
Life has many ups and downs, and not all are founded in academic difficulties. The SRM of each residence brings many years experience to his or her position, and as such, is willing and able to assist students through periods of personal difficulty. No matter how big or small the problem may be, it is important that students know that they have someone to turn to with whom they can discuss whatever is bothering them.
It may be that the SRM will direct the student to the University counsellor, or a solution may be found without that type of intervention. Parents and guardians can be assured that residents will find an entire range of support mechanisms in place should they be needed. Support staff in the residences are also experienced in assisting with a wide range of problems that a student may come up against.
Senior Residents are on hand at all times to render assistance if necessary. A resident may need to visit a GP, or just be experiencing a bout of homesickness – there is always a member of staff or a Senior Resident to help.
Each residence offers its students a comprehensive range of academic support, from peer mentoring programs to formal tutorial sessions.
If a student is concerned about his or her academic progress, the SRM or other residence staff will direct them to the appropriate academic advisor. The SRM of each residence is able to access and monitor academic progress and, if necessary, will discuss the matter with the student in order to offer him or her the appropriate assistance.
Students who miss classes or examinations due to illness or other personal difficulties are able to apply for special consideration. This service is available at Student Central.
Many students support themselves through University. Some obtain scholarships, financial aid or receive AusStudy. Most however are reliant on parents or guardians to pay or assist with the payment of accommodation fees.
Accounts are generated monthly and sent directly to the resident, or, if requested, may be sent to the family home. Fees may be paid by cash, EFTPOS, cheque or money order (in Australian Dollars) or by credit card. Families who may be experiencing difficulties should feel free to contact the SRM of the residence in which their son or daughter is living to discuss payment plans or other alternatives for payment of accommodation fees. For more information on payment of fees please refer to our Paying Your Account brochure.
If you need clarification of accounts, please feel free to contact the Residence and speak to staff. We will be more than happy to help you.