Family Info – Milwaukee Campus

Welcome Families and Guests!

Families are a critical source of support for our new Panthers, and Orientation marks their entrance into the UWM community. We invite families to participate in your student’s transition by joining us for Family Orientation and reviewing important information below!

Does your family primarily speak Spanish? —Ofrecemos la orientación para familias en EspañolGo here for information on how you and your family can engage in a Spanish-Language support, facilitated by UWM’s Roberto Hernández Center.

Our philosophy is to put students in the “driver’s seat” of their educational experience, so we intentionally have portions of our programs that are students only, which includes course selection.

New Family Orientation Checklist
Follow these steps to stay in the loop about UWM and the Panther Family Association:

  1. Access the Panther Family Portal if you haven’t already to get important updates in support of your student
  2. Attend orientation with your student.
    • See a list of local, alumni-owned restaurants!
  3. Learn about the Federal Education Privacy Rights Act (FERPA) and what that means for access to your student’s records.
  4. Visit campus, whether that’s for signature events like Panther Family Weekend in October, or another day!
Health & Well-being Resources
UWM and the Student Health and Wellness Center understand that health and well-being are building blocks of student success, and families play an important role in supporting your students. For more information, please watch this Student Health and Wellness Center video.

Course Registration Advising and FERPA

Parents and families are encouraged to join their student throughout their Orientation experience. At the time of course enrollment and advising, however, families will not be able to participate, in accordance with the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (more on this below). FERPA aside, advising appointments are beneficial to the establishment of trust and rapport between your student and their advisor, and these are important first steps on the road toward graduation.

It is important to understand the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA) applies differently to college students than to elementary or high school students — your student now has sole and direct ownership of their educational records. While parents and families understandably have an interest in a student’s academic progress, they may only access the student’s records with written consent. We encourage families to honor and appreciate their student’s role in charting their academic path and choosing their courses, under the guidance of UWM’s professional advisors. See for more information about how FERPA applies to college students.

Family Orientation Content

Select Materials from Family Orientation Sessions from previous orientation programs is available via the links below. Please feel free to review the slides and reach out to individual offices with questions. Please also note that to receive the most up to date information, please refer to the individual UWM office websites:

  • Academic Advising at UWM – link coming soon!
  • Families and Financial Aid – link coming soon!
  • The College Student Transition – link coming soon!
  • Helping Your Panther Be Healthy & Successful – link coming soon!
  • University Housing Presentation – link coming soon!