Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) from Parents and Families
of current Penn State New Kensington students
1. How can I reach my student if we have a family emergency?
If there is a death, sudden illness, or other serious emergency in the family, the Registrar’s Office (724-334-6040) will help locate your student and relay a message to call home immediately. The Office of Student Affairs (724-334-6062) can also assist families during a time of emergency. If something occurs over a break or holiday and a student will be delayed in returning to school, please call the Office of Student Affairs so that the staff can notify instructors.*
For other health-related emergencies, contact Health Services. To reach Nurse Elaine, call 724-334-6066 with health-related questions or concerns.
Personal Counseling Services are available on campus Monday 10:00 a.m. - 3:00 p.m., Tuesday Noon - 3:00 p.m., and Thursday 9:00 a.m. - 11:00 a.m. (August to May).
In the case of a missing student, please contact the Penn State New Kensington University Police Services at 724-334-6120 or the PSU 24-hour response at 814-863-1111.
* Staff members cannot excuse students from class; they only inform academic units of an absence. It is the student’s responsibility to follow through with the instructors after returning to campus. Transportation to and from campus is the responsibility of the student or family.
2. Where can my son/daughter find out about careers in his/her major and learn how to obtain an internship?
Students are expected to take an active role in locating, applying for, and obtaining an internship site and completing the necessary requirements to receive academic credit. Career Services provides services and resources to assist and support students in finding and preparing for internships.
3. How can I get information on financial aid for students?
Parents and students may obtain information concerning financial aid through Financial Aid or calling 724-334-LION. Student aid can be defined as any resource that supplements what parents and students are expected to contribute to meet the costs of a college education. Penn State students receive four types of student aid: grants, scholarships, loans, and work-study.
4. Where can I get my questions answered concerning my son or daughter's tuition bill?
Questions concerning a student's bill, refund or payments are referred to the Bursar's Office. You may contact them by calling 814-865-6528, accessing the Bursar's website or writing to Bursar's Office, The Pennsylvania State University, 103 Shields Building, University Park, PA 16802.
5. Where can I find information on housing options?
Off-Campus Housing Options include:
Nittany Highlands Apartments: This privately owned apartment complex is located across the street and provides apartment-style living and a residence hall-like experience
Additional Off-Campus Housing: Due to our close proximity to Pittsburgh, our students have plenty of housing options to choose from. However, students choosing to live off campus should plan to have access to a car
6. Is there a University events calendar?
Yes. View the Campus Calendar online.
7. Is there an academic calendar noting the start and end of classes each semester?
Yes. The Registrar's office publishes the University's official academic calendar.
8. Are there immunization and medical requirements for new students enrolled at Penn State?
Yes, Penn State requires all degree-seeking students to be immunized against measles, mumps, and rubella and to submit this information online. Students are also encouraged to complete an online Health History form. Learn More.
9. When will my student receive his/her tuition bill?
Beginning approximately 6 weeks prior to the start of classes, bills will be prepared for students who have scheduled classes and have full eLion access. Students will receive notification via their Penn State email account when the tuition bill is available to view/pay or to confirm registration on eLion. Paper bills are not mailed. Bills are prepared mid-July for fall semester, mid-November for spring semester and mid-April for summer semester. Residence hall charges are included on the bill, if applicable. Bills are prepared on a weekly basis through the first 10 days of the semester for students scheduling later. More billing information is available on the Tuition Bill Instructions page from the Bursar's office.
10. What should my student do if he/she has additional student aid?
The “Anticipated Student Financial Aid Detail” section on your Tuition Bill shows your current known available aid. If you have additional scholarships, grants, or loans, please refer to this section at Tuition Bill Instructions for information noting those changes. The tuition bill on eLion will reflect current information (requires permission for parent access). Procedures for payment from College Savings Plans are also available on this site.
For more information about billing and class registration visit the Registrar.
For more information about financial assistance for students at the Office of Student Aid.
11. Our family insurance company (or my employer) is requiring proof that my son/ daughter is (or was) enrolled at Penn State. What do I do?
Insurance companies, financial lenders or employers may require proof that a student was or is currently enrolled at Penn State. An academic verification provides proof of enrollment, graduation, student status, and other related information.
Academic verifications are now available to parents through the eLion Parent/Other menu. Prior to use, parents must first be granted access by their students. Steps to complete the process can be found here.
12. At Penn State, how is a "campus" different from a "college"?
Colleges at Penn State should not be confused with campuses:
A campus is a place. The location where students take classes and may reside in a residence hall. Penn State has 20 campuses located throughout the state.
A college is an academic organization. A collection of faculty and students teaching and studying a common subject. We have 11 academic colleges at University Park campus and 6 others at Penn State campuses throughout Pennsylvania.
Most degree-seeking Penn State students attend a campus and are enrolled in a college. For more information, visit our Listing of Campuses and Colleges.
13. My son/daughter is going to transfer to another Penn State campus next year, what resources are available to him/her?
At Penn State, the process of relocating from one campus to another is called Change of Location, and this typically takes place after completing the first two years of full-time study toward a baccalaureate degree. Change of Location requests submitted prior to the completion of two years of study are only granted in extreme cases in which the student would not be able to meet the curricular requirements of the chosen major.
To transition between campuses, the only requirement is that you meet the entrance to major requirements for your selected major. For more information about the 2+2 Plan, contact the campus advisor for the major you are interested in, or contact Admissions.
Events including the biennial Penn State New Kensington Student Reunion at University Park, annual trip to the Link UP program at University Park, and annual Student Send-Off Reception at Penn State New Kensington, provide information and resources to students transferring to another Penn State campus.
On-campus housing requests and information can be found at www.eliving.psu.edu
Off-campus housing information is campus specific; please visit your intended campus’ website for more information.
For more information please contact the Penn State New Kensington Office of Student Affairs at 724-334-6062.
14. My student is having trouble in his/her classes, is help available?
Students having trouble in class are encouraged to seek help from the course faculty, the Office of Academic Affairs, and the Academic and Career Success Center.
The Academic and Career Success Center at Penn State New Kensington includes resources for students who are having difficulty with a particular course as well as for students who aim to maintain a high academic standing. Services include tutorial services, special topic workshops, study groups, writing support, math support, support for learning disabilities, and academic resource materials.
15. My son/daughter has a disability. Whom should I contact at Penn State New Kensington to discuss disability services?
Disability Services provides support and assistance for students with disabilities who are seeking accommodations. Students with disabilities should contact the campus Disability Services liaisons to discuss the University's process for receiving reasonable accommodations. The liaisons on campus include: Elaine Zarichnak, Campus Nurse, firstname.lastname@example.org and Laurie Durzo, Director, Learning Center, email@example.com. During the summer months, contact Theresa Bonk, Director of Student Affairs, at firstname.lastname@example.org.
16. Can I have access to my son/daughter’s grades?
When the student reaches the age of 18 or begins attending a postsecondary institution, FERPA rights transfer from the parent to the student. This means that parents may not obtain any of their student's education records without the written consent of the student. For more information, please visit the Penn State Parents & Families page on Student Privacy.
17. Where can I find more information for Penn State parents and families?
Please download our Parent's Guide (pdf).
- Resources for Parents & Families
- Academic Support
- Athletics & Tickets
- FAQ from Parents of Current Students
- FAQ from Parents of Prospective Students
- Housing & Food
- Health & Counseling Services
- Info for Families of Prospective Students
- Life at PSNK
- Safety & Security
- Student Privacy
- Student Services
- Tuition & Fees
- Visiting the Campus