Handling Goodbyes: Make your Community Last Even After Members Leave

Handling Goodbyes: Make your Community Last Even After Members Leave

So it’s coming to that point of the year again…after all the stress of the spring semester classes and finals are over.  My Res-Life Staff is leaving me!  How can I possibly say goodbye to six unique individuals who have been a big part of my life as a first time res-life supervisor?

Well, I can say goodbye by realizing that I do not actually have follow everything on the checklist that normally describes how people handle goodbyes.

good bye


— I do not have to stop checking up on how these six individuals are growing.

— I do not have to stop asking how these individuals’ new college experiences are going.

— I do not have to stop having these individuals’ best interests at heart.

While goodbyes are not fun, too often, people get into the mindset that once another person is no longer a part of the community where they met, they cannot talk to that individual.  Why???

Keeping communication is especially important when:

— You have a mentor-like relationship with one of these community members;

— You have found a system of support in these other community members;

— You have similar goals to these community members.

So do good-byes really have to mean cutting all communication? No!

Pick up your phone, send a quick e-mail, write a letter, and keep that relationship with a past community member alive!


Dakota Bocan

Hi all, I am a recent graduate from Edinboro University of Pennsylvania, where I graduated with a degree in Developmental Psychology and the honor of Summa Cum Laude. Presently, I am serving as one of two Graduate Resident Directors at The University of Pittsburgh at Titusville, PA. Along with my administrative duties for both Student Conduct and Residence Life and Housing, I also directly supervise a team of eight resident assistants. In addition, I am also attending Slippery Rock University’s graduate program for Higher Education Administration in Student Affairs. I am highly interested in a student affairs profession, specifically in Residence Life and Housing. However, any aspect of the student affairs field intrigues me, due to the ability for professionals in this field to develop strong leadership opportunities with college students. Since I am a younger professional I think the following quote is something that both I and other professionals in any field should remember and try to live by: "There is no passion to be found in settling for a life that is less than the one you are capable of living." - Nelson Mandela

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