Picture this: you're living in New York while your baby is getting their college experience on the other side of the country. Suddenly, just a couple of weeks into their freshman year, they come down with a nasty bug.

Fear not, because you've got a "concierge mom" on call. Yep, you heard that right. An on-call mom will travel to your sick college student and take care of them just as you would if you were there.

Mindy Horwitz created a service called "mindyKNOWS" back in 2019. Parents who live, say in New York, and have a college student too far to get to easily can hire a local helper to be there for their college-bound kiddo when they can't.

Whether it's a birthday bash, a little health scare, or any other curveball, these concierge moms are on the scene. You can snag one of these super-moms for students at top schools like Penn State, Northwestern, Washington University, and several others.

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"We're like the experts in our city, offering parents insider tips, advice, and recommendations," explains Mindy. "We see ourselves as their second family, ready to step in and provide that extra support when needed."

But wait, is this "concierge mom" really such a great idea? Some experts have raised concerns about helicopter parenting and worry that by swooping in to solve every problem, kids might miss out on honing essential life skills.

"We need to strike a balance between showing love and stepping back to let young adults navigate their own challenges," says Emily Edlynn, a clinical psychologist.

These concierge services cover a wide range of tasks, with most requests coming from parents. Prices range from $49 for a month of service to $1,600 for all four years of college. These "moms" won't do laundry or cook dinner; they focus on the nitty-gritty stuff like finding a doctor or arranging a wheelchair for visiting grandparents.

However, some experts say that it's important to prepare your child for college life by encouraging them to handle tasks like making their own doctor's appointments. This helps them build confidence in basic life skills and familiarize themselves with the support services available on campus.

The concierge moms go above and beyond, from delivering surprise treats to soothing sick students with homemade chicken soup. While these gestures are heartwarming, experts stress the importance of young adults learning to rely on a community beyond their parents for support.

Mindy emphasizes that her team aims to create bonds with families and provide assistance during both happy occasions and challenging moments and that by empowering students to deal with situations independently, they can develop a sense of autonomy and agency in their lives.

Ultimately, the goal is to give young adults the space to grow and flourish independently while still offering love and support from a distance.

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