A student and their family meets Ernie the Eagle

Welcome to the Embry-Riddle Prescott Campus Parent & Family Association Frequently Asked Questions page. Below are several questions that current members have asked in the past or answers they have offered to share with parents of incoming freshmen. Some of the topics are good information for beyond the freshman year as well.

The answers listed "From One Parent To Another" represent various parent's recommendations from personal experiences and should not be considered the official University response.

Before we get started with the questions, here are a few tips and comments, From One Parent To Another:

  • For many freshmen, this is the first time they will be living away from home and, very often, the first time they will have to share a room with someone else. Helping them prepare for this situation and encouraging them to use the resources on campus for help and guidance will relieve some stress for them (and you) about this new experience.
  • The best thing for the freshmen parents to know is to Ask Questions. Feel free to contact the Dean of Students Office with questions.
  • Please feel free to contact any of the Parent Advisory Board members if you have questions, suggestions, or just want to talk. Board Members names can be found on the Embry-Riddle Prescott Parent Association Board Member page.

Living On Campus in a Residence Hall

Students Living On-Campus: All students who live on campus in residential housing will have a mailbox where they can receive personal and University mail. Packages sent via UPS, USPS, Fed Ex, and other carriers are supported by the Embry-Riddle Mailroom. Students/parents may ship or receive packages through most recognized carriers. It is the responsibility of each student to check his or her campus mailbox on a regular basis. Mailboxes for incoming freshmen are open on August 1st for the Fall Semester, and not before.

Embry-Riddle address:

Student’s First and Last Name
3700 Willow Creek Road
ERAU Box Number
Prescott, AZ 86301

Students Living Off-Campus: Students who reside off-campus should use their off-campus residence or secure a PO Box in town for all of their mail. A limited number of campus mail boxes have been made available for students living off campus. If your student lives off campus, please confirm whether s/he would like their mail sent to their off campus residence address, PO Box or an ERAU mail box. (If ERAU mailbox, address is same as above for on campus students)

Yes. You can send packages ahead addressed to your student's mailing address:

Student’s First and Last Name
Box ___________
3700 Willow Creek Road
Prescott, AZ 86301

Students pick up their mail and packages at the Mailroom (Building 11).

Throughout the year, parents and families may want to send care packages or other items to their student. The same mailing address would be used.

Some families who live out of state choose to get their student’s supplies ahead of time, before their student arrives for the semester, and ship them to campus. If this is the case, your student may not have a box assigned yet. In that event, just use their name. Please note, the Mailroom will only be open regular hour (M-F, 8:00 am - 4:30 pm) so if your student is arriving on the weekend it may not be the best option. Others opt to have items shipped to local stores and then pick them up when they arrive in town. Some national stores with Prescott locations include Target, Wal-Mart, Bed, Bath and Beyond, and Kohl's. Additionally, Housing sends out information for a company they work with where students can order directly and the items (i.e., bedding) are shipped directly to the Housing Office. If ordered by the deadline, the items will be placed in a student’s room before they arrive on campus. Check with Housing or watch for information from them for this option.

There are all kinds of things that current parents suggest freshmen bring to help their students have a comfortable room while at school. At the same time, there are space constraints that may make it harder to find the needed storage space. As a general rule, we suggest waiting until students get to campus and then make a plan with their roommates as to who will supply what.

From One Parent To Another:

  • Vacuum cleaners and toilet plungers are available in each room or suite or through the RA. Extra toilet paper is a must!
  • A small desk fan is a very useful item. 
  • One parent compiled this comprehensive list from Bed, Bath and Beyond, Target, and other stores, along with her own ideas. 
  • Be sure to have your student check the Embry-Riddle Department of Student Life website for specific information about Housing and Residential Life on the Prescott Campus. Their FAQ page will answer many questions.

To support your student without interfering with their study schedule, there are several things you can do. Here are some suggestions:

  • Surprise them with restaurant gift cards. They like breaks from the meal plan and/or cooking.
  • Drop them a “hi, we’re thinking of you" card (text messages and emails come and go, but a card is something to put up and glance at over time.)
  • Buy a cake from the Women’s Scholarship Fund, something from the ERAU Bookstore, or a care package basket.

From One Parent To Another:
Before you deliver your son or daughter to ERAU Prescott, help them learn to do laundry if they have never done it before. Let them do a few loads at home with your guidance before they have to do it on their own in an unfamiliar environment.

Also, I recommend finding the laundry room location in relation to their dorm room. 

Purchasing the pre-measured laundry detergent packets is a great convenience.

Remember, money can be added to your student’s Eagle Card and that can be used on the laundry machines. That way, they don’t have to search for money just to do a load of laundry.

From One Parent To Another:
For those from other countries or states that didn’t think to check ... Prescott has some of the best days of sun and can have really great weather at any time of year. But Prescott is also over 5,000 feet in elevation and many days during the winter months, it is extremely windy. So pack accordingly for winter.

It also snows here and the roads can be icy, so be sure to have a variety of clothing.
There are a few of options for ordering linens:

You can find the information on this University Endorsed Linens Program page. This information is offered to you by the ERAU Residence Hall Association. There are deadlines associated with this website to be sure to look for that information.

Bedding and room supply purchases can also be made at your local stores. You might check and see if you can have the items held at their Prescott store location (if they have one) for pickup when you arrive with your student. For example, there is a Bed, Bath and Beyond store in Prescott, as well as Wal-Mart, Target, and Kohl’s. Check with your local store to see if they offer this service.

From One Parent To Another:
Remember to get extra-long twin size bedding when making purchases.

While we generally discourage cooking in rooms without kitchen facilities, you may bring a rice cooker, crock pot, or coffee maker. In rooms without kitchen facilities, you have use of a University-provided compact refrigerator (4.5 cubic feet or smaller). Other cooking appliances such as hot pots, electric frying pans, non-University provided microwaves and refrigerators, or anything with an exposed heating element or open flame are not permitted due to fire and safety hazards. All rooms without kitchen facilities will have access to a community kitchen in the Residence Hall.

On a positive note, one parent commented that her son lives in University Apartment housing and has been cooking some of his meals for two years. When he comes home for a visit, he cooks for their family. Definitely a skill he perfected living away from home. During a recent Parents Weekend, he and his three roommates hosted a barbecue out at a lake with all the families.

From One Parent To Another:
Moving into a suite with five strangers can be somewhat stressful. Having a private and secure place to store valuables (wallet, money, jewelry, car keys, etc.) can give the student some peace of mind.

One suggestion is to get a small room safe that bolts to the bed/desk area. It doesn't take up any floor space, which is a prime commodity in a room. Purchase a padlock with a key that the student can keep on their lanyard or key chain with their school ID. We got our safe at Bed, Bath and Beyond and bought the padlock at Walmart.
At this time, the campus has filtered fill stations for smaller bottles at many of the campus drinking fountains. However, there is not a place to fill large jugs. Some suite-mates may choose to purchase a filtering product like Brita or other comparable system. By the way, Prescott water overall is very good!

If your student is leaving in December, they need to be out the day after graduation in December. As long as your student is coming back in January, they are not required to leave for Winter Break (the Residence Halls do not close in December). The housing contract ends the day after graduation in May, which is when students need to be out. If they are living in Housing for the Summer, then move out is the day after the last final. For more specific information see the Terms and Conditions documents under Housing Forms on the Housing website.

Living Off Campus

Students Living On-Campus: All students who live on campus in residential housing will have a mailbox where they can receive personal and University mail. Packages sent via UPS, USPS, Fed Ex, and other carriers are supported by the Embry-Riddle Mailroom. Students/parents may ship or receive packages through most recognized carriers. It is the responsibility of each student to check his or her campus mailbox on a regular basis. Mailboxes for incoming freshmen are open on August 1st for the Fall Semester, and not before.

Embry-Riddle address:

Student’s First and Last Name
3700 Willow Creek Road
ERAU Box Number
Prescott, AZ 86301

Students Living Off-Campus: Students who reside off-campus should use their off-campus residence or secure a PO Box in town for all of their mail. A limited number of campus mail boxes have been made available for students living off campus. If your student lives off campus, please confirm whether s/he would like their mail sent to their off campus residence address, PO Box or an ERAU mail box. (If ERAU mailbox, address is same as above for on campus students)
From One Parent To Another:

Prescott is the closest area to ERAU. Prescott Valley and Chino Valley are both further away (10-15 minutes) but usually less expensive. There are a few apartment complexes near the school, within 1-2 miles. Take the drive time to school into consideration when looking for off-campus housing. Make sure you check for safe areas when looking for an off-campus apartment/house/condo to rent.
From One Parent To Another: 

Wait lists can be extremely long in complexes close to the school. You need to start early when looking for off-campus housing.
From One Parent To Another: 

Off-campus housing is fairly reasonable. Apartment rents are going up but it is because demand is huge. If you can find a house for rent that will house 4 or 5 students, the costs will be lower. It can be challenging to find houses that will rent to college students.
From One Parent To Another:

Start looking as soon as you know that your student is going to move off campus for the next school year. You may have to put your student's name on a wait list and take whatever is offered -- when it is offered, just to get the apartment for the next school year. Example: apartment becomes available in June for school year starting in August -- if you don't take it and pay for the extra months rent, you may not get another chance before school starts.
From One Parent To Another: 

1 to 3 in an apartment, usually -- check with apartment management if you have a proposal for more. Houses/condos can house more, but they rarely rent to college students.

From One Parent To Another: 

There are a limited number of places to rent in Prescott. There are more available in Prescott Valley and they are usually less expensive but farther away (10-15 minutes from campus). You’ll want to research locations on your own as there are new ones opening in the area. Use the Chamber of Commerce offices in PrescottPrescott Valley, and Chino Valley as well as internet searches to do your exploration. Check online (Craig’s List, etc.) Other students are a great resource as well.

From One Parent To Another: 

Overall, Prescott is a low crime area. Some areas are safer than others. Make sure you check the properties before signing a contract. You can find crime statistics on-line for the complex and area you are looking into. Yelp and other on-line formats can be helpful in your search.
From One Parent To Another: 

The Housing Office provides limited assistance for off-campus housing. However, they usually host an off-campus housing fair in the spring.
From One Parent To Another: 

Make sure roommates are going to be able to pay and stay the length of the signed contract -- usually a year is the best deal, some complexes will do a 6 month contract if asked. Roommate issues have to be dealt with by the roommates.
From One Parent To Another:

There are a limited number of ERAU mailboxes on-campus for students who live off-campus. Students obtain ERAU boxes on a first come/first serve basis. If they do not have an ERAU box they will need to make sure the apartment address (or an in-town PO Box) is put in their ERAU ERNIE account. All school mail will go to their local address which is listed on their ERNIE account.
From One Parent To Another: 

Some costs most likely not included in the apartment or house rent are: electricity, gas, water, trash, sewer, fees to be paid at time of contract signing, food, living expenses such as; toilet paper, soap, vacuum cleaner, furniture, gas for car, etc.
From One Parent To Another: 

Most of the contracts are year-round. A co-signer is necessary if your student does not have credit or a job or is too young. Rent must be paid on time or a late charge is added. Read the contract carefully.
From One Parent To Another: 

There are some houses/condos in the immediate ERAU area for sale. Prices are going up every year. It can be practical to buy because the dwelling can be rented to students after yours leaves.
From One Parent To Another:

Make sure all roommates understand they are under contract for the ENTIRE contract. If they leave school for any reason, they need to continue to pay their share or find someone to take over their room that is acceptable to other roommate(s). The apartment complex needs to be notified as soon as possible. It shouldn’t void the contract but it will change it. There may be fees involved.
From One Parent To Another: 

Renter’s insurance is required for most apartment complexes. One roommate, at least, needs proof of insurance. Houses/condos insurance requirements are up to the management.
From One Parent To Another: 

Some apartment managers will check their apartments for cleanliness. Mostly to keep bug infestations to a minimum and to make sure there are no large damages, etc. This is something that is in the contract – read carefully.
From One Parent To Another: 

Most apartment complexes do not allow loud parties after 10:00 p.m. You should check with the apartment/house/condo manager and read the contract carefully.
From One Parent To Another: 

There is very little public transportation in Prescott at this time.

What if my Student is Sick?

The Wellness Center on campus is open 7:00am-4:00pm, Monday-Thursday and 8:00am-4:00pm Friday during the school year. During the summer it is open 7:00am-5:00pm Monday-Thursday (closed Friday – all offices are closed on Fridays during the summer).

When a student is sick they can call (928-777-6653) or drop by the Wellness Center (Building 73). If it is after hours they need to go to the local hospital ER or an Urgent Care Facility, depending on the situation.

During the school year there is a doctor on campus five days a week. There is also a chiropractor who comes three Tuesdays a month and a massage therapist every Wednesday. During the summer these services are offered on a limited basis.
Yes, students are allowed to keep their own prescribed and over-the-counter medications in their room. They are responsible for their usage.

Yavapai Regional Medical Center has two locations serving the Prescott area. They are located at 1003 Willow Creek Road in Prescott and at 7700 East Florentine Road in Prescott Valley.

NextCare Urgent Care is located at 2062 Willow Creek Road in Prescott. There are other facilities in the area as well. We encourage you to locate the one closest to your student’s home and become familiar with them.

This is a family decision to be discussed and decided with their own attorney and medical teams.

Traveling to Prescott

Always ask for the ERAU rate when booking a hotel room in the Prescott area. The rate isn’t published on the website, and you will need to speak directly with the hotel. Not every hotel has an ERAU rate, but there is no harm in asking.

For more information on dining and lodging options near campus, visit Prescott's local Restaurant and Hotel guides.

Visitors to the Prescott area, including those traveling to Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University, are now able to take advantage of new jet service from Prescott Municipal Airport (PRC). SkyWest Airlines, flying under the United Express banner, offers service to Los Angeles (LAX) and Denver (DEN), with connections available to dozens of United Airlines destinations nationally and internationally. For ticket information or reservations to and from Prescott, visit United Airlines' website. For more information on the Prescott airport, visit the Prescott Municipal Airport website.

Groome Transportation provides transportation to and from the Phoenix airport to campus and several area hotels. Reservations are required.

Other travel related information can be found on our Map & Directions to Campus page.

The finals schedules are in place and published as part of the class schedule, which is available the previous semester. Unless your student is involved with graduation ceremony activities, it is safe to say they are free to leave campus at the end of the Thursday before graduation. Your student should verify their finals testing time with their professors at the start of the semester.

There is food service available through the Thursday of finals week, including meal plans. There will be some food service available after that, but it is limited (credit, debit) on the Friday before graduation. In some cases, there may be additional food service available after graduation.

Additionally, campus holidays can be found on the Campus Academic Calendar. Each semester is listed along with the dates for classes to begin and end, holidays, special events happening on campus, etc.
Yes. They can leave their vehicle on campus. Students should go to the Safety Office to let them know they are leaving a vehicle on campus. They will need to give a description of the vehicle and leave phone number where they can be reached over the break. Students should also check with the Safety Office for information on which lot to park in.
Embry-Riddle does not have an official ride-sharing process. Students can post fliers on bulletin boards or even a few different Facebook pages. They should check with the information desk in the student union to see how to go about either of these options.

Yes. A registered bicycle can be left on campus for the summer. Your student will need to follow instructions from Housing and Residence Life about moving their bike to the racks outside the T1 residence hall. Unregistered bicycles or bikes left behind at other residence halls are subject to collection and donation to a local charity.  

A bicycle permit is free and does not expire, but it is required.

Car or No Car?

At least a couple of parents have weighed in on the “Car” question. It really is an individual family’s decision, but the following may help you in the decision-making process:

  • Our son is a sophomore this year. He brought his vehicle his freshman year. Consider this: Your kid will probably end up in someone else's vehicle if he or she does not have one. There are times when the shuttle isn't available or convenient. Our choice was easy. We know our kid is a very cautious driver, and we know he has no interest in drinking. We'd rather know he was in his own vehicle and he was at the wheel.

  • Our son did not start his freshman year at ERAU with a car. He used his suitemates for transportation. He didn’t think the campus transportation ran at times he needed to go into town. I tend to think it was more embarrassing than inconvenient.
    It became apparent that our son was struggling with having to stay on campus all day, every day. He runs for exercise and did run across Willow Creek Road at the beautiful lake area near campus. He still wanted some freedom away from campus. It was really a cause for concern for us. He became pretty down, and we decided after Christmas break to get him a vehicle. We purchased one in Arizona. It was not the best used car, but it worked and was safe. Our son was much happier. He didn’t really drive much, but the ability was there if he needed the break.
    He drove the car to Phoenix and back a few times. We worried every time. We also drove the main road to Phoenix, and it seemed pretty safe. The car made it back to California, where we live. However, a note of caution: Arizona smog rules are different than California, and we were unable to smog the car here. All kids are different, but we do understand the freedom the kids need sometimes. ERAU is intense and a rather small campus. It is not in walking distance of much, so some kind of transportation is necessary.

  • We have an incoming freshman who has a car. We live in California, and after driving two of the roads leading into Prescott, we are seriously considering not letting him take his car now due to safety and responsibility issues.

  • The City of Prescott has limited public transportation. The University provides shuttles, as needed. At the beginning of each semester, there are several shuttles to various shopping areas so that students can stock up on supplies. Each following week, the Student Government Association (SGA) offers a shuttle. Several daily shuttles run from Campus to the Flight Line.
    Any ERAU-sponsored activities (athletics, clubs, off-campus concerts, etc.) have transportation provided. Once settled on campus, students often get to know other students with cars and will get a ride as needed for shopping, movies, etc. There is a shopping center (grocery store and several food options) within walking distance from campus. It is located less than one mile away, and the sidewalk is completely lit from campus to the shopping center.

  • If you and your student decide to provide a personal vehicle, a parking sticker is required and is available through the Safety Office. Other transportation options — including bicycles, skateboards, etc. — are welcome on campus. They should also be registered with the Safety Office.

  • Students should be comfortable with winter driving conditions, including ice, snow, and heavy rain.

Be patient! Drivers in the Prescott area are often unpredictable, slow, impatient, etc. Also, the weather in Prescott (and throughout Arizona) can be unpredictable at times. NEVER CROSS A FLOODED WASH ….and never go around a barricade on a road or wash.
If you do decide to have your student have a car on campus, make sure it is registered with the Safety Office and has a current parking permit. Also, make sure all registrations, insurances, etc. are up to date. Double check to make sure the VIN is accurate in all locations.
From One Parent To Another:

Please take the time to check your vehicle VIN number against your insurance card, and check to make sure your insurance is paid and current. If there is a discrepancy, contact your insurance agent immediately. VIN numbers are in the lower driver's side corner of the windshield, as well as the door-edge and frame on the driver's side. As well as numerous other places. Our son had an experience where there was a typo and when a sheriff ran his plate, it didn’t match. He was pulled over, his plate was seized and he was left to his own resourcefulness along the side of an Interstate highway…all because of a clerical error somewhere between Motor Vehicle Department and our Insurance Company!
At this time Uber is very limited in the Prescott area.

Technology: Computers, Cellphones and Hot Spots

While computers are nice to have on-campus (or while living off-campus), they can be expensive. There are computer labs on campus (including a 24-hour lab in the Student Union). The Library does have laptops that can be checked out for a limited time and used in the Library. They need to check them out in person using their Eagle card. The student will need to remember to save their work elsewhere – on a thumb drive or on the cloud, for example. If they are a freshman or transfer student, it is recommended that the student wait until they get to campus and into their classes to see if they really need one (and any particulars that may be required or suggested). If your student is planning to purchase a computer, Embry-Riddle students can use their school email address at Dell and Apple online stores to receive student discounts. Embry-Riddle offers a selection of free operating systems and Microsoft Office suites downloadable through ERNIE, so don’t pay for this software at the time of the computer purchase. Contact IT if you have further questions or require technical support at 928-777-6990 or ITSupport@erau.edu.

We're an Apple computer family. I'm wondering if my student will be fine with his/her Apple computer. I know some programs are written for PC computers and are not Apple friendly.

Answer (From our IT Department):
University IT publishes a Buying Guide for Student Personal Computers at https://ernie.erau.edu/Departments/information-technology/purchasing-technology/Pages/Default.aspx (your student must be logged in to ERNIE to access this website) that covers PCs and laptops that run the Windows operating system.

We encourage students to use a computer system that meets or exceeds the recommended hardware and software specifications of the machines the University purchases:

  • i5 Quad Core, 3.40GHz, 6MB w/HD2500 Graphics (Equivalent processor speeds may vary by manufacturer and chipset)

  • 8GB RAM or higher

  • 500GB Hard drive

  • 1 GB Video Card Memory

  • DVD writable drive

  • 100base-T Ethernet connection

  • 802.11 b/g/n WiFi Network interface card

  • Current version of Windows

We do not have guidelines for Macs, though similar specifications to these for Windows machines would be appropriate.

From One Parent To Another:

  • When we were shopping around for computers for our son, he opted for a 2010 MacBook Pro computer.
    Granted, the standard computer hardware has become more powerful, but the programs he uses mostly on his personal computer are Word, Excel, and some other engineering-based programs. I've talked with him, and he said the majority of the programs offered on the PC side are available for use on the computers in the library or computer labs.
    He also said a lot of students have Macs as their personal computers, and it comes more down to preference than anything. My son also has had some friends who went through the flight program at Embry-Riddle and they've had no such problems with Mac vs. PC. So if you're concerned with Mac vs. PC, I wouldn't be too worried as long as they use the available resources at their disposal offered by the University.

  • As to the Mac vs. PC (Windows) question, I had a similar concern when our student started there. I decided to purchase a MacBook Pro and install a program called BootCamp on it. It lets you boot the Mac in either the Mac environment or Windows when you turn it on. I figured then we had both sides covered. He liked the Mac side so much — since it links with iTunes, his iPhone, the interface, etc., that I'm not even sure if he uses the Windows side much, if at all.

  • Summer 2016 - My son feels that 16 GB of RAM is beneficial and that a DVD drive is not that important.

The cell services from various companies seem to have been improved. AT&T provides the best coverage in Prescott, followed by Verizon, T-mobile, and Spring. There is no 5G coverage.
This parent offers the advice of using Dropbox as a way to safely share important documents with your student while they are away at school:

From One Parent To Another:
There is a free service called Dropbox. Basically it's like having a hard drive on the Internet that any of your devices can get to (i.e. Mac, PC, iPhone, Android, iPad, etc.) and it's free. In general, it's a place to store files and can even be setup to automatically back up any new pictures off of your phone and other features as well.

The "tip" that I'm getting at as it relates to a son or daughter being away is the following: Email, in general, isn't safe, and through various means someone could see what's being sent or attached in an email. For example, your child calls and needs a quick copy of their birth certificate, their social security card, some other ID, medical forms, document from home, etc. — basically anything that you'd rather not email or text.

Dropbox lets you set up folders just like on your computer, but you have the option to share the folder with the public or specific individuals that also have the Dropbox application. It's also smart enough to alert those others as soon as someone places a new file in that shared folder. So you can look at it as sort of pushing something electronically out to a thumb drive and handing to your child — just quicker, safer, and easier.

There are other services similar to Dropbox like Google Drive, Microsoft SkyDrive, and Apple iCloud, but some of those have various restrictions. So each person would have to check out each service to see what is best for them.

Other uses: It's also a great way to do what I call “Making the refrigerator door electronic.” So many people seem to have the fridge door or cabinet door posted with all of those sport schedules, appointment cards, sticky note reminders, list of what to bring to camp next week, grocery list, etc.

How many times are you somewhere and think you wish you had something posted on the door? If you can get in the habit of not taping/magnet/sticking the X or Y to the door, but rather snapping a picture of the item with your smartphone and loading it to Dropbox, suddenly everyone in your family has access to what's on the door. 

Last one: What if you lost your purse or wallet? Or maybe forgot it but needed something in it like a medical card, credit card, driver's license, insurance card, car registration card, etc. Take out all of those cards and such and lay them out. Take a photo of the front and back with your smartphone. Upload the pictures to Dropbox and put them in a folder called "my wallet" (delete all the pics from your phone in case you lose it). Now you can access copies of them anytime you need them.

I just used this the other day at the doctor's office. We had to rush out and I forgot my wallet, but I had my phone. The doctor's office wanted the numbers off of our new medical cards and wanted my "co-pay" as well. Initially, I was at a loss what to do, then I said, hold on, opened Dropbox, went to the folder, showed them my insurance card and took the numbers off the credit card and they ran it.

From One Parent To Another:
Parents have mixed feelings on the use of Microcells:

  • I thought of something that might make cellphone communication easier in the residence halls. Because the residence halls are concrete block, there is little to no cell reception in the room. My son was on the bottom floor — great room right next to the laundry. But the cell reception was awful. While we didn’t get this for him (we thought of it after he moved out of the residential halls), it might work for others:
    Get a Microcell from their cellphone service carrier. The Microcells are either free or very cheap. They "up" the signal in places where the signal is very weak. Also, it gets pretty chilly in the winter in Prescott. Our son hated to go outside to call us.

  • The microcell doesn't work well when all the students are on the Internet (especially in the evenings).

From One Parent To Another:
Several parents wanted to let new parents and students — especially freshmen — know about on campus IT help for computer/printer problems and the ability to check out lap tops in the library in a pinch.

Here is the information for our various IT support contacts on campus:

  • ResNet Help Desk (Library Room 237, Prescott, or 928-777-6999)
  • IT Support (928-777-6990) or ITSupport@erau.edu

First-Time Freshman Parents

From One Parent To Another:
My husband and I enjoyed Dean Larry Stephan’s presentation "Letting Go While Holding On." I have also found three well-written books on the topic of "launching" to be of great interest since first sending a daughter to college three years ago:

  • "Emptying the Nest," Launching Your Young Adult Toward Success and Self-Reliance, by Brad E. Sachs, Ph.D. Today's young adults face a tough job market and a rapidly changing world and are often still struggling to achieve financial and emotional independence well into their 20s. Recognized parenting expert Brad Sachs draws on his extensive clinical experience to show parents how to cultivate their young adults' success and self-reliance while simultaneously maintaining healthy family relationships.

  • "Letting Go: A Parents' Guide to Understanding the College Years” by Karen Levin Coburn and Madge Lawrence Treeger. For more than a decade, "Letting Go" has provided parents with valuable insights, information, comfort, and guidance throughout the emotional and social changes of their children's college years — from the senior year in high school through college graduation. Based on real-life experience and recommended by colleges and universities around the country, this indispensable book has been updated and revised, offering even more compassionate, practical, and up-to-the minute information.

  • "The Launching Years: Strategies for Parenting From Senior year to College Life", by Laura S. Kastner, Ph.D., and Jennifer Wyatt, Ph.D., including responding to "freshman freakouts," staying connected from a distance, and handling your teen's newfound independence.

Many parents enjoy attending Dean Stephan’s presentation at orientation and continue to refer to it throughout the fall semester. Did you miss it or want to review it?

You can find it here.

From One Parent To Another:
Orientation was awesome - I learned a great deal. Our students are so, so busy with class schedules and all of the awesome activities available to them. What worked really well for us was to ask our student to email us their schedule, including activities. We also asked for some time once a week or every other week, that they felt is best for a "call home" for updates with us.

By doing it this way, our student felt the transition from “at home" to “I'm responsible, and the more I demonstrate this to my family, the less they will bug me."

We miss them so much. We are used to seeing them every day, getting daily updates at meals, etc. They don't realize how much we want to hear from them, but because of the intensity of this dynamic school’s pace, they are really too busy to check in with us more frequently.

To support your student without interfering with their study schedule, there are several things you can do. Here are some suggestions:

There are several ways to show your support to your student while they are on campus. Some of them include:

  • Order a cake from the Women’s Association of ERAU. All proceeds go to the Women’s Association Scholarship Fund. Fill out the form and mail in your check. (Please allow a minimum of two weeks between ordering and delivery).
  • Buy an ad in the Horizons newspaper. Direct questions to the Advertising Department by phone at 928-778-3891 or email prnews@erau.edu.
  • Order a basket through CarePackages.com. In doing so, the Embry-Riddle Prescott Campus Residence Hall Association will receive a percentage of the items ordered. Visit their website CarePackages.com to pick out your items, then call customer service at 800-892-8741 and place your order. Be sure to use the Embry-Riddle Prescott Campus code (ERA7C2P QA1). At this time, they are not able to process orders online. You can still order online, but the Residence Hall Association will not get credit for the order.
  • Buy something from the Embry-Riddle Bookstore. Parents’ & Family Association members get a 10-percent discount on clothing and gifts.
The Cashier's Office generates the 1098-T forms every January. You can check with the Cashier's Office for more information:

Phone: 928-777 3726
Fax: 928-777-6616
Email: pcbursar@erau.edu
Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University
3700 Willow Creek Road
Prescott, AZ 86301-3720

Some advice from one student to another:

Please share this with your incoming freshman student so that they may have some insight from someone who’s been there. It was provided by recent graduate Jordan Giangiulio, just after his sophomore year…it still applies!

Some things I have learned since becoming an ERAU Prescott student:

Your EAGLEcard is more than just your Student ID. If you have a meal plan (and most of you will since it is required for freshmen), you will use your EAGLEcard to get into the Earhart’s (the dining hall), Scholars Café, WOW Cafe, Rocket Deli, and Eagles Café. You can also put money (Eagle Dollars) on your EAGLEcard to use on some vending machines and washing machines on campus.

You were probably at the top of your class in high school, but now the work is going to be much harder and there is a lot more of it. Many of you will struggle for the first time in your academic careers. I know I did. Don’t be afraid to go to your professors during office hours for help. Also, you can go to the tutoring center for additional assistance. Keep in mind that if you are not doing well in a class you can audit it in order to keep it from affecting your GPA. However, do not audit a class just because it is difficult. Try to get some help. If you are doing really poorly in a class and going in to see your professor, but you know you are going to fail the class anyway, then it is better to audit the class rather than fail it and letting it pull down your GPA.

When the end of the semester comes and you get your final grades you may see Cs and Ds, and maybe an F for the first time. If you end up getting a grade in a class that is lower than you would like, you can retake the class for a better grade and the new grade will replace the old one. If you retake a class and slack off and end up getting a lower grade, the new grade will still be the one that goes on your transcript. So if you do retake a class, you need to make sure you earn a better grade.

Parents worry and care about their children, and yours are no different. So call them. I know you are going to be busy now that you are in college, but set up a day to call each week (I call my parents every Sunday) so they can expect to hear from you.

Moving away from home for the first time can be hard. Not to mention that your studies here at ERAU will be intense. Finding time to relax is key to maintaining your sanity. The Student Union offers TV and video games, as well as pool tables, air hockey, ping pong, and foosball, and it is a great place to relax and make new friends. The Department of Student Engagement also hosts on-campus activities like comedians, movies, and magicians.

If you have a car, you will have the freedom to leave campus whenever you want. If you don’t have one, there are regularly scheduled shuttles throughout the day that will take you to the Flight Line. You should also keep an eye out for announcements about shuttles to Walmart, Fry’s, and possibly other locations. You will likely make friends with others who have vehicles.

Some things I had to get used to when I moved to Prescott:

  • The weather here is crazy: The winds often will cancel flights (especially in spring and summer.  I’m a flight student). Also, I grew up in Texas, where snow is all but myth, but it snows here. That means you will have to be careful not to slip on ice, and if you have a car, you are going to have to learn how to drive in it.

  • Out of all of the phone services, Verizon works the best on campus and in the city of Prescott. If you have another service, your signal may be patchy or you may find dead zones. I had Sprint when I first came here and got so tired of searching for signal in order to make a phone call that I switched to Verizon.

  • Being from Texas, I was used to humid air. Arizona is very dry, so you will have to drink much more water than usual if you are from a more humid climate. Also, Prescott is at 5,000 feet, so if you are used to lower altitudes you may notice that you get out of breath faster. This will take some time to adapt to the higher altitude.

Enjoy Embry-Riddle! I know I am.

From One Parent To Another:

Consider writing down the after-hours housing phone number for cases of emergency. It is posted on the floor bulletin board and is answered 24 hours per day. These days the only way to contact your student is via their cell. Having a backup plan can provide peace of mind.

Also, feel free to contact the Campus Safety Department at any time at 928-777-3333.

Banks, Credit Unions, ATMs and Notary Public

Resources can be found at the local Chamber of Commerce websites:

From One Parent To Another:
The Prescott Federal Credit does not charge ATM fees. They are extremely nice and service-minded. We opened an account for our son as soon as he was enrolled at ERAU. After that one visit, we were on a first-name basis. They remembered us and have been very helpful making sure our son's away-from-home banking experience goes smoothly.

Please note: The Prescott Federal Credit Union also advertises in the Horizons campus paper — supporting our community. If you do decide to open an account at the Prescott Federal Credit Union, please let them know that we appreciate their advertising support. Horizons stays afloat because of the financial support of the ads.

From One Parent To Another:
Working with Credit Union West has been great to work with. They also support our Student Veterans Organization.

There are two ATMs on campus that are part of a small credit union (Prescott Federal Credit Union). One is located just outside the Hangar in the Student Union (on the quad side of the building) and one is located near the doors to Earhart's Dining. 

From One Parent To Another:
Remember to talk to your student about finding ATMs with low fees or using their debit card for small purchases and getting cash back to reduce the number of fees.
Students may cash a personal check made payable to them in our cashiers office. They are limited to $100 per day, and no third-party checks are accepted. If the student has on-campus employment, the cashier’s office will cash their payroll check in the full amount.
Generally there is a Notary Public in the Financial Aid Office as well as the Contracts/Business Office. There are also Notary Public services at most local banks. Students should call first to make sure someone with that qualification is on site.

Class-Related Questions

Although it can be a bit complicated depending on how you do it, Embry-Riddle Worldwide is a great alternative if you want to pick up summer classes online. Your student should check with their academic advisor for options.

Students can also attend a local institution in their hometown over the summer. We encourage them to check with their academic adviser to make sure all credits will transfer and be accepted before attending.
If your student is enrolled in the flight program, there are discounts if they schedule flights during holidays and breaks. Your student should check with the Flight Line to get current information.
If your student is already registered for classes and they have their class schedule from the Records Office, they can go to the Prescott Campus Bookstore to order books. Feel free to call the Bookstore at 928-777-3733 with questions. Also check online, as many websites offer textbook rentals.

Parents’ & Family Association Members get a 10-percent Bookstore discount on clothing and gifts.
Take advantage of their professor's office hours to ask questions on the points where they are struggling. Get involved in study groups and seek out opportunities for tutoring. Encourage them not to procrastinate and get behind on their work. Utilize the tutoring support services.

If a Career is Your Student's Ultimate Goal

It is never too early for your student to start contacting their Career Services representative. The Career Services professionals can help your student start making a plan, assist with resume writing, and even give suggestions for summer internships that may support their career goals.
Usually students apply for internships during their sophomore or junior years. However, depending on their individual situation, they could do one as early as the summer after their freshman year. They should meet with their Career Services Professional to determine what is best for their goals and educational path.
The answer to this is an emphatic yes! All students should have an entire business attire outfit by the end of their freshman year.

Male students should have a suit, tie and appropriate shoes. Female students need a business appropriate dress or suit. A skirt and jacket or pant suit would be appropriate. Please be sure the dress or skirt length reaches the top of the knee at least and shoes are appropriate – including height and shape of heels. For business purposes dark or muted suit colors are best for both males and females. Details matter: socks/hosiery, limited jewelry, appropriate accessories, conservative make-up, and hair. Remind your students that the whole package makes a first impression!

Finances tough? Check out your local thrift stores! Many times there are "current-style" suits that still have tags on them. Also, the Career Services Department now has a Community Closet. Current items are donated by parents and other interested supporters and given to students in need at no cost. Have items to donate? Let us know!