Parents and Families

Planning for Winter Break Travel

In a few short weeks, your student’s fall semester will be complete and they will be departing our Ann Arbor campus for their winter break destination, whether that is their permanent residence or elsewhere. Read on for tips to help your student maintain their health and safety during their holiday travel, as well as transportation options available to and from campus to Detroit Metro Airport and other locations. 

Winter scene at the Law Quad

Supporting Your Student’s Mental Health and Wellbeing

As we near the end of the fall 2021 semester and approach final examinations, we know our students may face increasing stressors that can make balancing their own mental health and wellbeing more challenging. 

The university currently offers numerous resources to help students navigate stress and is also broadening its approach to more holistically address our students’ mental health and wellness. 

Read on to discover resources that are available for your student, as well as updates on the university’s efforts to strengthen its approach to supporting your student’s mental health and wellbeing.

Flu Cases on Campus

Your student may have shared with you or you may have read that the University of Michigan’s Ann Arbor campus recently experienced a large and sudden increase in cases of influenza among students. Last week, federal health experts arrived in Ann Arbor to learn more about how the flu is spreading and the effectiveness of this year’s flu vaccine.

We encourage every member of our community to get a flu shot. Flu vaccination rates in our community are far lower than COVID-19 vaccination rates—and the COVID-19 vaccine does not protect against the flu virus. 

Beat the Flu

Celebrating Thanksgiving Dinner on Campus

Is your student planning to remain in Ann Arbor during the Thanksgiving break? If so, they can enjoy a meal with all the trimmings at Mosher-Jordan Dining Hall on Thursday, November 25, from 11:30 a.m. to 2:00 p.m. 

Students without a meal plan may purchase Thanksgiving dinner—all they care to eat—with Blue Bucks for $14.67 or with a credit card for $16.97 (plus any applicable taxes). More information, including bus schedules, is available on the M | Dining website.

COVID-19 and Holiday Travel

We know our families and loved ones are likely eagerly awaiting your student’s return home during the upcoming scheduled university breaks. As you prepare to reunite with your student, they can help maintain the health and safety of their community at home and at U-M—their home away from home—through pre- and post-travel COVID-19 testing.

Read on for detailed testing guidance during holiday travel or watch a "Friendsgiving" video conversation with Michigan public health experts for their tips on domestic and international travel to interacting with family and friends.


What’s New? Stay Up-to-date…

As we move into a period of particularly frequent travel for our students and more activities happening indoors due to colder weather, we are committed to providing you and your student with up-to-date information on current campus life and opportunities that will make an education at U-M a safe, positive experience. These regular updates include the stabilization of COVID-19 spread in the U-M community, increases in COVID-19 and influenza in the state and on campus, booster shots, and important tips for staying healthy over the holiday breaks. 

If you miss any of these updates, you can view President Mark S. Schlissel’s most recent message at any time during the week. You also can stay informed on a daily basis by visiting the Campus Maize and Blueprint page.

Campus Blueprint

Our Time With Your Student

Dear Wolverine Families, 

For an administrator in higher education like me, there is nothing quite like Parents & Family Weekend. While I had a wonderful time welcoming students (back) to campus a few short months ago, the fun of this special weekend earlier this month was an entirely new experience.

In many ways, I have been feeling like a second-year student myself. I started this job in the middle of the pandemic and met most people through a computer screen for the better part of a year. This semester, I am experiencing many “firsts” at the University of Michigan. Perhaps that’s why I felt a special kind of warmth at our fall semester events, getting to see many parents, families, and loved ones alongside their students.

Now that we’re into November, we are looking at Thanksgiving Break and the expected holiday travel rush, and the end of the semester not too far beyond that. Some students are also reaching the point in the semester where they are feeling a bit burned out. Fortunately, we have well-being resources to help students build resilience and healthy habits and offer some respite—and many students are taking advantage. 

In this edition of Family Matters, you’ll learn about what your student can expect for traveling over the holidays, including public health safety protocols and easy transportation to and from the airport. We’ll also walk you through the latest student mental health and well-being resources that have been recently added to our array of support services. 

A COVID Update

​Dear Parents and Families,

As we move into a period of particularly frequent travel for our students and more activities happening indoors due to colder weather, we are committed to providing you and your student with up-to-date information on current campus life and opportunities that will make an education at U-M a safe, positive experience. 

Earlier today, your student received this emailed update, which includes updates on the importance of getting a flu shot, COVID-19 cases related to social activities and travel, and opportunities for COVID-19 testing before the Thanksgiving break. 

Our top priority is ensuring the health and safety of your student and our broader University of Michigan community. While living with the realities of COVID-19 has become more prevalent, we continue to strengthen our approach to keeping our community safe.

To stay up to date throughout the week, you may also view the Campus Maize and Blueprint site.