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Over-Parenting

Parental apron strings are longer than ever before. It used to be that once college graduation hit and the last tuition check was mailed, junior was on his or her own. That's not the case anymore. Parents who have managed their children's life from the soccer field to college are just sticking with what they know. Now they’re inserting themselves into their kids job searches, job interviews and even negotiating their children's pay packages.

Here's a Parent Hall of Shame, listing the worst cases of parent involvement.

Job Fair

Marcia Hariss, director of career services at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill had a parent show up at a college-sponsored career fair last year. Hariss noticed the parent going from table to table collecting information. "I went up to a parent and tactfully tried to explain why the student would come across as a better job candidate if their child was independent," she says.

Calls to the Career Center

Not every student takes advantage of the college career center, so some parents try to take it upon them to use it as a resource. "The parent of a college senior called and asked if she could register with the office because her son wouldn't do it," says Hariss of the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill's career center. "We said no, we're really sorry but registration is for students."

Parents as Secretaries

Pam Engle, vice president of human resources at BB&T Bank, says it's not unusual now for parents to call and schedule their child's job interview. They frequently say their child is too busy with school work to do it themselves. "They literally want to make sure it happens," says Engle.

Parents Pulling Strings

Suzanne Dagger, the associate director of Hofstra University's career center, recently received a call from a parent who asked what companies her son has on-campus interviews with. The reason, said the parent, was so that she could figure out if she knew anyone at those companies and pull a few strings for her son. "I was stunned," says Dagger. "I look at it as the parent not trusting their child. Let the student do their own networking."

Checking In

Marcia Hariss, of the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill's career center, recently got a call from a parent who wanted to know why her child was not chosen for interviews. "I told the parent that we can discuss in general the services we have to offer, but we can't reveal whether the student registered with us or whether he submitted a résumé."