Parents and Families
Message for Parents
Frederick Community College is committed to the academic success and personal growth of our students. We recognize that the college experience presents students with new challenges in terms of decision-making, independence, and responsibility. We encourage you to allow your student to use the opportunity that their college experience presents them to develop the skills necessary for transitioning into adulthood.
College presents students with the opportunity to become better decision makers, accept responsibility, and become more independent. We encourage you to allow your student to use the opportunity that their college experience presents them to develop skills necessary for transitioning into adulthood.
Time of TransitionWe also recognize that college represents a time of transition for you as a parent. But just as college presents students with the opportunity to become more independent, it is also an opportunity for parents to move from the role of manager to consultant allowing students the opportunity to work out problems for themselves with the reassurance that you, as their parent, will be available to give advice as needed.
A Healthy BalanceAllowing students to manage their own education does not mean that they will no longer need you. Indeed, despite their quest for independence, students will still need your continued support as they attempt to manage the academic and personal decisions involved in their college experience. But they will also need your encouragement to allow them to take steps on their own to manage the variety of challenges awaiting them. This will mean allowing your student to work through difficult situations with the faculty and staff at the college rather than relying on you to intervene on their behalf. And because we expect this, the college offers services and resources designed to help students develop the skills necessary to manage the demands and challenges associated with college life. Students should attend our New Student Advising Sessions; read our College Catalog, Student Handbook, and the information on our Web site; and talk with counselors and faculty members (encourage your student to make use of their office hours) to learn about college requirements, policies and procedures, and the wide array of learning opportunities both in and outside the classroom that the college offers.
At FCC, students learn, grow, and change to become knowledgeable, mature, responsible adults, capable of managing the complex issues that the world presents them. By providing them guidance and allowing them to achieve greater levels of independence and self-reliance, students develop self confidence and the skills necessary to ensure the attainment of their educational and personal goals as they transition into adulthood.
|Frequently Asked Questions|
|1.||How can I ensure that my child gets into needed classes?|
|Students should plan on registering as early as possible in the registration cycle each semester. Early registration provides the most choices in terms of classes and class times. |
Students should meet regularly with an academic advisor/counselor to develop their academic plan. Counselors are experts in academic advising and transfer requirements, along with specific program requirements. They are always available to assist students in choosing appropriate courses and to guide students to needed support services.
|2.||Why is the first year of college the most important year for most students?|
|Statistically, students who successfully complete the first year of college are the students who are most likely to obtain a degree. This first year, however, includes the most challenges, including time management and learning how to learn independently. First year seminar learning communities provide excellent opportunities to adjust to college learning and social demands.|
During this first year, it is important that students begin to establish career goals based on interests and abilities. The career center can help.
|1.||How safe is the campus, especially at night?|
|Security officers are available 24x7. Located in the Classroom/Student Center Building (Building H), the security office may be contacted at 301-846-2453, by dialing "0" on any campus phone or by using any call box located around campus.|
Although there are night classes until 10:45 p.m., activity on campus slows down after 7:00 p.m. Students leaving late classes should arrange to walk to cars with other classmates, or may call on security to escort them when necessary. Security personnel wear light blue uniforms and identification badges.
The campus safety and security/crime report is available on the college’s Web site, and is updated annually to reflect current year data.
|2.||Is public transportation available?|
|In many cases, there is available bus service. Pick up a schedule from the Center for Student Engagement or the College Information Center. Frederick transit buses stop at the college from 6:57 a.m. – 9:30 p.m., Mondays-Fridays and 7:45 a.m. – 5 p.m. on Saturdays. Discounted tickets can be purchased at the FCC Bookstore. Service is available for disabled riders; call Transit Services at 301.694.2065 for information.|
|3.||Is there a student ID card?|
|Students get their ID cards in the Welcome and Registration Center when they register. ID cards are used by dining services and the library, and must be shown when doing business with the college (e.g., picking up transcripts, paying bills, etc.). |
|4.||Does a student need a parking sticker?|
|All enrolled students may get a parking sticker, at no cost, in the Welcome & Registration Center, A102. Students may park in any space not designated as staff parking or other unauthorized spaces such as handicapped or reserved spaces. Students parking in unauthorized spaces will be issued citations and vehicles parked illegally, disrupting traffic flow, or creating a safety hazard will be towed at the owner’s expense. |
|5.||What is the college policy on smoking?|
|The FCC campus itself is smoke-free; smoking is only allowed in parking lots. |
|1.||How many credits should a student take each semester?|
Traditionally, because a four-year college degree consists of about 120 credits, students were expected to complete 30 credits per year, or 15 credits per semester to be able to complete the degree in four years. However, the amount of time it takes a student to complete a college degree is increasing. In 1999-2000, the average student completing a bachelor’s degree required 4.58 years to do so.
Part of this increase is due to the fact that most college students work while they attend college. While each student’s situation will dictate how many classes he/she can reasonably accomplish each semester, during a student’s first semester, the college will often recommend a course load of no more than 12 credits for those students who intend to be full-time. This allows the student to become acclimated to the demands of college.
Enrollment in January Term and Summer semesters provides an opportunity for students to catch up on credits if their goal is to complete 30 credits during their first year. The following chart is intended to offer some guidelines about balancing work and course load.
|2.||How much time should students spend studying outside of class?|
A general rule is that for every hour spent in class, two hours of study time outside of class are required. However, this can vary depending on the specific requirements of a course. More important than how MUCH should someone study is HOW should someone study. Studying is a skill and if students have not developed that skill, they may still struggle regardless of how much time they study.
FCC has a 2 credit course called Learning Strategies that teaches students how to study at a college level. More information about study skills, including time management techniques, test-taking and note taking strategies can be found at
|3.||How do I know if my son or daughter is struggling academically?|
The best resource for parents to determine how their son or daughter is doing in school is their son or daughter. Unlike high school, colleges do not send report cards to students' parents. Students are expected to take responsibility for their academic progress including sharing that progress with parents. Students do receive feedback from their instructors in a variety of ways including quizzes, papers, lab assignments, journals, and in-class assignments. At FCC, instructors are asked to provide feedback to students about their progress by the sixth week of the semester. This allows students to ascertain their progress early enough in the semester to get assistance or make changes in their schedule or study habits.
|4.||Will I see a report card?|
No, grades are not mailed to the student. Students can access their grades on the FCC student system through their student account in PeopleSoft.
|5.||How many classes can a student miss?|
|At FCC, the attendance policy for each course is set by the faculty member teaching the course. Students will likely experience a range of attendance policies: some faculty may not take attendance; others may have policies which limit the number of absences a student may have before their grade is affected. The attendance policy for each course can be found on the course syllabus. Students should make themselves aware of the attendance policy for each course on the first day of class.
Some general considerations:
|6.||What should a student do if he/she has to miss a class due to a family emergency?|
The student should contact his/her faculty member prior to the class time, by phone or e-mail.
|7.||Who is considered a full-time student?|
Students enrolled in 12 or more credits during the fall or spring semester are considered full time. There are several reasons why students are required to maintain full-time status. Students over age 18 often must be enrolled in college on a full-time basis in order to remain covered under a parent’s health insurance plan.
Students who are members of a college athletic team are required to be enrolled full-time during the semester(s) the sport is in season. Additionally, some scholarships require full-time enrollment. When a student withdraws from a course or switches his/her registration status to audit for a course, that course is no longer counted in the course load and they may drop below 12 credits. In this case, they are no longer considered a full-time student.
Being a full-time student indicates a full-time commitment to being in college. College classes do not allow time within the class period for doing homework. Therefore, students need to allow ample time outside the classroom to study.
|8.||What is the Honors College?|
The Honors College at FCC is for students who want to increase the intellectual rigor and enrich learning through small classes (10-15 students), close interaction with superb faculty, and academic activities (e.g., research projects, field trips, and guest speakers) inside and outside the classroom. Click here to visit the Honors College Web page for more information.
|9.||How can a student contact a faculty member?|
Email addresses and contact information are included on every syllabus. This information is also available on the college Web site.
Click here to view a sample English 101 syllabus (pdf)
|11.||What is FCC’s policy on Academic Integrity/Classroom Behavior?|
FCC expects all students to maintain a high level of academic integrity. Regulations regarding classroom behavior and issues of academic integrity can be found in the Catalog and in the Student Handbook. Both can be found on the college’s Web site: www.frederick.edu.
|1.||When is payment for tuition and fees due for the semester?|
When students register in person, they are sent to the Cashier’s Office to obtain a copy of their student account summary and class schedule. The account summary lists all tuition and fees for the semester. Payment deadlines for fall and spring semester are generally about three weeks prior to the start of the semester; the actual dates are printed in the Schedule of Courses and on the student account summary. After that initial pay date, in the three weeks before the semester starts, payment is expected at the time students register.
|2.||Does FCC have a payment plan?|
FCC does have a payment plan; it requires the student/parent to pay a down payment plus a $25 processing fee. Subsequent payments are spread over two or three months, depending on the time of the year the student signs up for the plan. Payments are automatically deducted from a checking or credit card account.
|3.||If my student drops, can he/she receive a refund?|
For 15-week sessions, students can drop and be refunded 100% of their tuition and fees during the first week of classes. The refund drops to 50% during the third week. After that time, there is no refund. For shorter sessions, the refund periods vary: see the schedule of classes for specific dates.
Between October 1 and December 1. The college’s scholarship system is named “Stars” and is online in the financial aid section of the Web site.
No. But students must park in the right lots. All parking is clearly marked as staff, students and visitors lots. Persons parking in inappropriate lots risk being towed.
Students can apply for financial aid any time during the year; however, all financial aid information must be completed by mid-June to ensure it will be credited to the student account prior to the fall semester bill due date. For spring, all information must be completed by November 1. If financial aid is not already credited to the student account by the time the initial bill is due for any semester, the student should sign up for the payment plan to ensure that classes are not dropped.|
Students who received financial aid in the fall semester do not have to re-apply in the spring semester. However, all students must apply for financial aid each year based on the previous year’s income tax information. Students who apply by March 1 will also be reviewed to determine if you qualify for a Maryland State Scholarship. To allow enough time for your financial aid application to be processed by the time your fall tuition is due, you should apply by June 1.
|Advising, Career and Transfer Services|
|1.||What advising/counseling services are available for my student?|
Academic advising services are available to all students, and can help focus student interests on a specific goal, then assist them in developing an educational plan for meeting that goal. Even if FCC doesn’t have your student’s major, they will help find a school that does and make sure he/she takes the right courses to transfer after completing general education classes. Academic advising helps select courses needed for the degree and plan a schedule based on work and family commitments as well as the student’s learning style. Academic advisors also know about resources available on campus.
|Transfer programs will best prepare your son or daughter to transfer to a baccalaureate-granting institution. If a student completes all degree requirements at FCC, he/she will ordinarily transfer as a junior. The associate of arts (A.A.), associate of science (A.S.), or associate of arts in teaching (A.A.T.) degrees are awarded when students complete all transfer programs. For more detailed information and a list of our programs, click here.
It’s a good idea for your son or daughter to contact an academic advisor. The advisor can help the student find a suitable transfer program for the major. In addition, the advisor can assist the student in selecting the right courses at FCC to ensure that credits transfer to the school of his or her choice.
College visits are very important and should be done, whenever possible, at least one, and preferably two, semesters before the student actually transfers. This is particularly important if the student plans to attend a private school or out-of-state school, as the articulation agreements may not be a solidified as they are with the U of MD system schools or nearby private institutions such as Hood College or Mt. Saint Mary’s University. The Career Center sponsors trips to selected colleges throughout the year.
FCC sponsors a College Night in early fall, and two Transfer Days during the year, where college recruiters and transfer specialists come on campus to talk with students. FCC also has a Transfer Center Web site with a variety of resources and tools to help you and your son or daughter through the transfer process.
|3.||What career services are available?|
|The Career Services Office has resources available for each step of the students’ career planning process. Whether students are figuring out their strengths, choosing a major, wondering what their options are, thinking about transfer schools, or gathering information on employers, we can help. Career Services also administers career assessments to identify their personality type, interests, skills and values. |
Career Center staff provide detailed descriptions of majors and careers, and explain which college majors lead to jobs they might want. The staff can help find a work-study job on campus if the Financial Aid Office determines that the student is. We also help students write resumes, prepare for interviews and begin a job search. In addition to suggestions specific to your needs, Career Services offers extensive online career information and resources at www.frederick.edu. Students can call, stop by, or e-mail email@example.com to make an appointment.
The Career Center also provides employment assistance for post-graduation, including preparation for job search. Employers looking for student help come on campus regularly to talk with students and accept applications.
|College Life and Wellness/Athletics|
|1.||What service learning or civic engagement opportunities are available?|
|The Center for Student Engagement includes service learning and civic engagement placement. This is great for students who are interested in volunteering in the community or would like to gain experience in their field of study by helping others. It’s also the place to learn about the needs of the community and volunteer opportunities should a particular course require a service project or service hours. |
In addition, campus clubs and organizations that are required to do service projects each semester can visit the Center for Student Engagement to match their project to the mission of their group. Stop by the Center for Student Engagement in the Classroom/Student Center Building (Building H) or call 301-846-2540.
Many courses at FCC include opportunities/requirements for service learning and civic engagement for the purpose of enhancing students' understanding of the relationship of college to their role in the world. Taking advantage of these opportunities can give learning a more meaningful purpose.
|2.||What extracurricular opportunities are available to FCC students?|
|Our student life program offers exciting extracurricular opportunities to interact with other students and cultivate leadership skills in a variety of ways. Students have the opportunity to join student clubs or organizations that are as diverse as their interests. Activities such as writing for the Commuter student newspaper, or running for office in the Student Government Association are just two of the possibilities. Contact Kristi Mills at 301.846.2488 for more information or stop by the Center for Student Engagement located in the Classroom/Student Center Building (Building H).|
At FCC students have both extracurricular and co-curricular opportunities. Co-curricular activities are linked to specific classes and provide students with the opportunity to use skills learned in that class in practical ways. Learning happens inside and outside the classroom and co-curricular activities to link these experiences.
The Center for Student Engagement publishes a calendar of all co-curricular and other events each semester.
|3.||Does FCC have opportunities for study abroad?|
|International education provides off-campus learning environments through international trips and study abroad opportunities offered by both credit and non-credit areas of the college. The London Work Study Abroad (LWSA) program provides students a one-semester experience in a cross-cultural setting. This 12-credit, 15-week spring semester experience includes a paid or unpaid work component to provide students the opportunity to immerse themselves in the British culture and to improve their marketability and workplace competencies. In addition, FCC is part of the statewide Maryland Community College International Education Consortium (MCCIEC) which offers short-term credit and non-credit trips. Check out the www.mcciec.org Web site to learn more details. For information on all international education choices, call 301.846.2521 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.|
|4.||How does my son or daughter get involved in athletics/wellness?|
|FCC has women’s basketball, volleyball, softball, and soccer; men’s basketball, soccer, and baseball. We also have a co-ed golf team. If a student is interested in trying out for a team, he/she should contact the athletic director at email@example.com. He will put the student in contact with the appropriate coach.|
Students are welcome to use the weight room facilities at any time the room is open and supervised. The weight room is located in the Field House.
|Student Support Services|
|1.||What Disability Support Services are Available?|
|FCC complies with Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 and the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) to provide equal access to the learning environment. Students who identify their disabilities, request services, submit appropriate documentation of their disability, and meet the specified criteria will be eligible for accommodations. SSD can provide various accommodations including sign language interpreters for Deaf or hard of hearing students, ability to tape record in the classroom, testing accommodations such as extended time for testing, and many other options that help students with disabilities complete their course of study. In addition to arranging accommodations with students, the SSD office can assist students with academic advising and help students participate in campus life.
Students should contact the office in A106A, Administration Hall; 301.846.2408; TTY 301.846.2625.
|2.||What other programs are available for Student Support?|
|Multicultural Student Services. Multicultural Student Services guide students through the adjustment to FCC, to college, to Frederick, and sometimes to the United States. A caring mentor or sponsor will meet with students individually and regularly to provide ongoing support in the transition to college. Mentors provide academic and personal encouragement. They help students understand procedures that might be new or different from their previous experiences. They answer questions, and explain where to get help. Multicultural Student Services sponsors workshops on expectations in the academic and working worlds, offers leadership and service opportunities, and provides social activities to help students connect with others. Opportunities offered through Multicultural Student Services are available to all FCC students.
Contact Multicultural Student Services in the Classroom/Student Center Building, 301.846.2531.
Office of Adult Services– Services for Parents. The Office of Adult Services (A107 Administration Hall; 301.846.2483) assists adults coming to college for the first time, or those returning to compelte a degree or start a new one. Adults who could benefit from extra support are encouraged to come by for guidance in exploring possible careers and scheduling classes. For those who meet income guidelines, financial assistance may be available to help with the costs of a college education.
The Office of Adult Services offers information and workshops that address the unique needs of adult students. It also houses targeted programs for specific audiences, particularly women, single parents, displaced homemakers, and Frederick City public housing residents. The Women’s Center is located in the Office of Adult Services and provides information and resources for women, referrals to services, workshops and social/professional networking opportunities. The Anne-Lynn Gross Breast Cancer Resource Center is housed in the Women’s Center and provides information and support for women and families affected by the disease.
Math Learning Center (B112, B Building, 301.846.2541). Faculty, tutors and math learning assistants are located in the Math Learning Center at most hours during the day and evening to assist students who need help with any lower-level FCC math course. And there is help for students in upper level courses and calculator workshops are available at select times; check with the MLC. The Math Learning Center is filled with people who love math and live to serve, and can help the “math challenged,” or math wizards who bump into unexpected hurdles. The MLC is a quiet place to work on math assignments.
Study Skills Services (L106 Library Building; 301.846.2616). Students who need better study habits for handling the pace and expectations of college-level assignments will benefit from study skill services. Students may attend free workshops throughout fall and spring semesters that teach strategies for approaching essay exams, give practical tips for taking multiple-choice tests, and offer techniques for studying more effectively. Individual or group sessions may be scheduled for help with specific proglems. In addition, FCC offers credit courses that help students learn how to study+ (SD112) and how to cope with college (SD103).
Tutorial Services (L233A Library Building; 301.846.2523; e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org.) . The Tutoring Center provides instructional assistance to students currently enrolled in FCC credit and developmental courses. Tutorial Services address specific subject areas; help is available in most subjects through face-to-face tutoring on campus or through tutoring online. Tutoring services are free. To request a tutor, go to Student Services at www.frederick.edu. For online tutoring, contact email@example.com.
Writing Center (L106 Library Building; 301-846-2619; firstname.lastname@example.org.). The Writing Center staff can help with writing assignments from any class. Staff members will discuss the strengths and weaknesses of the writing and how students how to actively revise and edit their writing. No appointment is needed for threes free, 30-minute, one-on-one sessions. Students can drop in Monday-Thursday, 8 a.m. – 9 p.m., and Fridays, 8 a.m. – 3 p.m. Students can also check the Writing Center Web site through www.frederick.edu for information on upcoming workshops, writing-related handouts, and links to help with research, grammar, and punctuation. Studetns can also e-mail their paper and any questions to an online writing coach anytime at email@example.com.
|1.||How can I get an enrollment verification for my health provider?|
|Enrollment verifications are available online. Students can access their Web account and print it out for the insurance. This service is also available upon request at the Welcome and Registration Center.|
|2.||What other information is available to students using their Web account?|
|Students can access their grades, unofficial transcripts, class schedule, and degree progress reports. They can also pay their bill or sign up for the payment plan online.|
|3.||Do students need their own computer?|
|The answer is a qualified "No." Students can use the public access machines in the library, the open computer lab (C208) and the Writing Center (L106) to complete their assignments. Online classes require off-campus Internet access with an Internet browser (e.g. Internet Explorer, Netscape, FireFox, etc). All students are given an fcc e-mail account when they register; this account should be used for communication regarding classes and for use with Blackboard-enhanced classes.
Many courses require students to use computers and the Internet. For all developmental reading and writing classes and for as many EN101 courses as we can put into computer labs each semester, students are required to work on computers in the classroom, work on those files out of the classroom, and bring the files back to class to work on them again. Students must have pen drives to transport these files.
If your student does not have access to a computer at home then he/she must plan time to come on campus to use public machines to complete assignments.
Click here to view the technology resources available at FCC.
|4.||Is there wireless access on campus?|
|Yes wireless is available across campus. Click here for more detailed information.|
|1.||What is available in the College Bookstore?|
|The College Bookstore sells textbooks, student supplies, and FCC-logo clothing and other items. Books are normally available about one month before the start of the semester. Students are free to purchase books from any location; however, they should check the Bookstore Web site to see what textbooks are required for each class, and to make sure that they get the proper edition and any supplemental materials.|
|2.||What about dining on campus?|
|The Cougar Grille is located in the Classroom/Student Center Building (Building H). Smooth Joe's coffee bar is also open in the same building. There are also various vending machine areas around campus.
Meal cards: You or your student(s) can purchase a meal card for any amount starting at five dollars. The meal cards are valid at both locations (the Cougar Grille and Smooth Joe's). See cashiers at any of the locations to purchase a meal card. Students purchasing a meal card get a free $5.00 coupon for the cafeteria
|1.||What type of library services are available on campus?|
|The FCC Library blends traditional library collections and new technologies into a comprehensive information service program. Resources include 25,000 books and media, 5,000 periodicals, 25 electronic databases, and the Internet. Materials support the curricula and the research needs of the college. Memberships in local, state and national information networks provide extended research cabilities.
The Library pages on the college’s Web site (www.frederick.edu/library) provide the catalog, special research databases, a selected set of reference-oriented Web sites, servie request forms, and information about the Library. Other electronic resources are available in the Library, which is wireless capable.
The Library occupies the north end of the top floor of the Library Building, in the center of campus. There are 40 computers for student use and space for individual or group study. For information on hours, collections and services, call 301.846.2444 or consult the college Web site.
|Inclement Weather/Emergency Closings|
|1.||How will we know if FCC is closed?|
|All students should sign up for the FCC Alert system, which will send both text and e-mail messages to students in case of emergency. Students sign up for this by clicking on the link at the top of the Web page. The local radio stations also carry closing announcements for weather emergencies.|