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What to Write in a Card to a Child Going to College or University

I read and write, rearrange furniture, paint and design. I have four kids.

Words, quotes, and advice to put in a card for a child going off to college.

Words, quotes, and advice to put in a card for a child going off to college.

Sending your son or daughter to college is a milestone and the start of a new phase for both of you. It can be a special and bittersweet time. My goal is to give you some ideas of what to write in a card to them as they begin this new life adventure!

Need some help with what to write in a note to send along with a batch of cookies? These messages will work for those occasions, too. A care package is sure to make your child feel at home.

Go ahead, send them some mail. They'll feel the love.

Advice for a Child Who Is Heading Off to College

  • I remember you waving to me as you got on the bus and headed off to school for the first time. Today, we (or I) are the ones who are waving and leaving. It feels a little strange for me to be the one waving, but I know you are ready for this new challenge.
  • You are a strong, intelligent, and independent person. I am proud of you now and always.
  • Don't forget to mind your manners, behave, and please text every once in a while. We'll miss you.
  • Your success story continues. You are heading off to college! We are so proud of you.
  • Studying will be only one form of education that college will provide. Embrace your independence, grow in character, and humbly learn from others.
  • We'll miss you at home, but we are proud of your desire to leave and continue learning, growing, and changing as a person. You have moved from childhood to the brink of adulthood. It is an amazing journey, and we are so glad to be able to be your parents and witness these changes in you.
  • I know you aren't a baby anymore but just be forewarned that when we see you next, I will be giving you a very big hug and probably also a kiss on the forehead.
  • No matter how old you are or how far you travel, we will always be your parents, and we will always be thankful we got to know you before anyone else did.
  • I'm going to miss your heaps of laundry left in all the wrong places. Please remember to bring some dirty clothes home when you visit. As your mom, I'll always get a sweet feeling when I see your clothes bouncing around in our washer and dryer.
  • When you hear dad's and my voice in your head saying things like, "You shouldn't be involved in what you are doing," please listen. We've given you advice up until this point for a reason.
  • If you need us, we can hop a plane and be to you within _____ hours. We love you. Don't be afraid to ask for help, admit to loneliness, or let us know that you just need to see some familiar faces.
What child who's gone off to college wouldn't love a care package of baked goods?

What child who's gone off to college wouldn't love a care package of baked goods?

Heartfelt Messages to Send Your Child Who Is Already Away at College

  • I am your mom. I long ago memorized the recipe of your favorite cookies. Look for a big batch in the mail. (Sharing with roommates is optional.) Love you.
  • Remember those notes I used to tuck into your lunchbox for you to find at school? This is like one of those, except you are a lot more grown up now, and I get to mail it to YOUR place. Proud of you and the independent person you are becoming.
  • Text me every once in a while. I am still your mom. I get worried. And dad gets worried too; he just pretends he doesn't. We love you.
  • Please come home for Thanksgiving this year. You are the biggest turkey of the family, after all.
  • Sometimes when I walk by your old room in our house, a little bit of the smell of your stinky shoes gets me. It's still gross, but I'm your mom, and because I am your mom, I think even the stinky parts of you are kind of cute. I love and miss you.
Cheer up a homesick college student with some good old humor.

Cheer up a homesick college student with some good old humor.

Humorous Messages to Send to Your Son or Daughter

  • Just think, you get to share a room with a complete stranger. You just might end up thinking I'm a better person to live with than you've thought all these years.
  • When you decide to skip class or think about not doing your coursework, please consider how much this is costing us.
  • Dad and I miss you. The dog misses you. Your sister wants you to know that she doesn't miss you.
  • Now that you are gone, I've noticed the grocery cart isn't nearly as full. And the fridge isn't as dirty. And I have fewer dishes to pick up from the family room. Hmmm. . . makes me think.
  • Please call me sometime this week; otherwise be warned that I may just "show up" to see you unannounced.
  • I've heard that sometimes when kids go to college, they end up realizing their parents are actually smart people. Just wondering if that revelation has hit you yet.
  • Please know that we are proud of you. So proud of you that we are willing to understand if you change majors or take different paths in life than your brothers and sisters did. We, however, are not very understanding about skipped classes or failing grades. We still are allowed to use our "mom voice" and our "dad voice" when talking to you about such things.
  • Did you know that colleges now make your attendance records and grades for each test and quiz available online? Wow, super exciting for us. Just wanted to let you know.

This content is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge and is not meant to substitute for formal and individualized advice from a qualified professional.