Only a small percentage of students with special learning needs attend college, but parents have the opportunity, from the moment their child is born, to insure that their child is one of the successful college graduates.

Successful students have strong personal qualities that help them learn independence. The way you mentor your child all through his or her life develops these personal qualities.

The most important step parents can take is to mentor their child to believe they will be successful. Help your child to believe in his or her intelligence and talents and to know in his heart that he can meet the challenge of obtaining a college education.

Parents can help their children by encouraging independence skills. Independence comes from developing skills such as self-awareness and self-acceptance— independent people realize they have strengths and weaknesses; they emphasize their strong talents and abilities, and minimize their less developed skills.

Kids who develop strong emotional coping strategies become more independent. They learn how to monitor their internal reactions, and reduce stress so they can keep on track. And they know how to develop positive support systems. They seek out people who help them achieve their goals rather than people who send them negative messages about their chances of success.

Independent kids are proactive. They believe in their ability to achieve, they look for opportunities to grow, and they take substantial steps to make their goals and dreams come to life.

Kids who succeed in college have learned how to set realistic, achievable goals. They know how to set long-term goals and to break these long-term goals into bite-size pieces that represent action steps they can take to achieve their goal.

They stick with it; they are persistent. Successful people see their setbacks or failures as temporary. When they encounter setbacks, they make adjustments if necessary, but they do not stop believing in their goals.

If your child has lost touch with his or her strength and conviction, please visit my Getting Started page to take the next step in helping him believe in himself again.

I look forward to helping your child develop the skills he’ll use all of his life to achieve his goals and live up to his own wildest expectations.

Visit the Getting Started page of my website to take the next step.