Supporting Your New Gopher: Part 1


Welcome From the President
Health & Counseling
When it comes to your students’ physical and mental well-being, there are a few things to do and know before he or she comes to campus:
  • Have your student check out the New Student Portal for the Health Center's requirements, including the medical forms that are due Friday, July 18. All incoming students must complete and return these forms by fax (410-337-6051) or mail (Goucher Student Health and Counseling, 1021 Dulaney Valley Road, Baltimore, MD 21204). Students who fail to return their forms, or who are not in compliance with the immunization requirements stated by Maryland law, will have a hold put on their account.
  • You and/or your student should make an appointment for a physical examination with health providers before your student comes to school, update required immunizations, and refill all medications.
  • Out-of-state students with Kaiser Permanente insurance will need to call the company and get a new ID number they can use in Maryland.
  • If your student is being followed at home for a serious chronic medical problem, you might want to check with your insurance company to see who your student could use in the Towson area for follow-up care.
  • If your student is being followed for mental health, please make arrangements now with his or her counselor for appointments during breaks and arrangements for receiving medications. Goucher Student Health and Counseling does not prescribe ADHD medications.

If you have other questions, call 410-337-6050 or visit our website at for more health and counseling information.

Financial Aid & Billing

Obviously we can’t cover everything related to financial aid and billing here. But, we can give a run-down of some important dates.

  • Tuesday, July 8, the Fall 2014 billing statements (i.e. e-bills) will be available to view and pay. Email notices are sent to students, parents, and others authorized by students. Further instructions can be found at The statement will include deposits paid, fall charges, credits, and financial aid (including pending aid not yet credited to the student's account).
  • If the fall payment is not received by Monday, August 4, a $200 charge will be applied to the account. For payment options, visit
  • All new students living on campus are assigned the 150-meal plan, but this may be changed up until Monday, September 8. For information on meal plans, go to For more information on our excellent food vendor, Bon App&eacutetit, click here.
  • Health insurance information will be mailed mid-July. Information can be found on our website in early July at Coverage for students begins Wednesday, August 20, and the waiver deadline is Tuesday, September 30.

To delve deeper into financial aid and billing information, click here. If you can’t find an answer to your question on the website, call 410-337-6022, email, or visit Dorsey Center, SAS Office, and you’ll be directed to the right person for the job.

Career Development Office (CDO) & On-Campus Employment

Whether a student needs to fulfill a work-study requirements or just wants some extra spending cash, the CDO can help find work that fits his or her needs and interests, often right here on campus.The CDO will have a job fair on campus in August (date TBD). For more immediate questions, you can contact the office at 410-337-6191,, or explore its corner of the website here.

Goucher OneCard

The Goucher OneCard acts as a student ID, library card, electronic "key" for on-campus buildings, and debit card for on- and some off-campus spending. The card is safe, simple, and secure. Though it's almost a guarantee your student will be well-versed in how to add money to the card, instructions can be found here. If you have questions about the card, contact the OneCard administrator at or 410-337-3115.

Transition Can be Tough
Dear Parents and Families,

Over the years, I have had the privilege and honor of assisting thousands of students and their families with the transition to college life. I've learned a thing or two along the way. Below you will find some tips and thoughts I have gathered over those years. The transition has already begun (in case you haven’t noticed ), so, what should you expect this summer?

  • This is a period of transition and excitement.
  • You may see the onset of separation anxiety between family members, This often manifests itself in sibling relationships – you may see some new and unusual sibling conflicts.
  • Remember your future college student is likely dealing with fears and anxieties about this transition, but don’t expect her or him to acknowledge it.

I always suggest that parents/families and their future college students have some “summer conversations” about the upcoming first year of college. Here are some proposed topics to cover:

  • Money, Money, Money
    • Talk about the actual, overall cost of the student’s education, financial aid, loans, etc. Also try discussing your student’s personal finances – budgeting and paying for books, gas, cell phone, auto maintenance, etc. Sharing your own strategies or thoughts can help him or her recognize all these miscellaneous expenses!
  • Visits
    • When will your student’s first visit home occur? Perhaps you should sit down and down and review the college’s academic calendar together to see what might work. Should the number of visits home be limited, as she or he acclimates to college life? Remember, the road goes both ways! Will you be attending Family Weekend, October 10–12? “Yes” is a good answer!
  • Freedom and Independence
    • With college comes freedom and independence. How will your student make this adjustment while also staying focused on academics, navigating the college social scene, and getting involved on campus outside of academic endeavors?
  • Communication
    • The ways you communicate will change once your student is at Goucher. What type of communication works best for your family – texts, email, calls, Skype, etc.? And how much is too much communication? (Some college administrators refer to cell phones as the “digital umbilical cord!”)

I hope this information is useful to you as you prepare for this exciting transition. Of course, even with the best preparations, your students will face obstacles during his or her first year of college. I see those bumps in the road as significant opportunities for student learning and growth. At such times, I encourage parents and family members to serve as advisers and coaches to their students. My experience has taught me that, in the college environment, the best solutions come about when the student is the primary problem solver. By empowering your student to work through the challenges she or he may experience while at Goucher, you greatly increase his or her independence and capacity to succeed.

I serve as the college’s chief student affairs officer and report for all student affairs departments and athletics. I look forward to seeing the fantastic things your student will do, and my team and I are here to help him or her achieve it! For more information on my office or how to contact me, click here.

See you in August!

Bryan F. Coker, Ph.D. (Dean Coker)

Have a Question?

Whether this is your first student off to college or you already have a Gopher on campus, we know a lot of questions can come up. We'll be sending out a second email later this month detailing technology requirements, campus safety, community living, the academic schedule, Orientation, and all things Towson.

For more detailed or pressing concerns, take a look at our administrative departments, academic departments, or call 410-337-6000 to be directed to the correct person.