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Voices of the Global Community

Entries for June 2009

As members of the NACADA Board of Directors, the AAT Editorial Board, and the Executive Office staff have talked with our membership around the globe, it has become clear that we share a common concern about the pressures that we all face in the current economic climate. We open this edition with the positive, constructive measures that have been taken at Georgia Perimeter College to ensure the success of the academic advising program at that institution.

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The NACADA Board of Directors and Council convened in San Antonio March 21-22 for our mid-year business meetings. I thought it would be appropriate to use this column to give my fellow NACADA members an update on two of the more timely topics the Board and Council are addressing at this time.

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This is NACADA's 30th Birthday! In "association years," we are still in our adolescence, growing and expanding, reaching for new horizons, and finding innovative ways to connect with each of you and provide the highest quality support and professional development opportunities to enhance the success of your students.

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If academic advising is a form teaching, what do advisors teach?

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We are currently experiencing one of the worst economic downturns in our country's history... The severity of the recession has left America's education in a precarious position...Advisors must be prepared to deal with new challenges and situations.

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Academic and career advisors must keep up with economic forecasts to help students with career planning and to pay particular attention to the special needs that students may have in a down economy...Advisors who encourage students to gain practical experience, expand their skill sets, and remain flexible give students the tools needed to react to the range of economic cycles they will experience in their lifetime.

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Our world is becoming ever more interconnected, and the ability to examine life from a truly global perspective is a valuable skill that everyone should possess.

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As our collegiate communities contemplate revenue shortfalls and endowment shrinkages, many of our students are facing financial concerns. Regardless of external situations, it is incumbent that PDR advisors remember that the student is the heart of the educational enterprise.

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This article discusses tools that can be used to help academic advisors increase their happiness and positivity levels.

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Two advisors share some 'tried and true' tips for increasing the chances of attending off-campus professional development opportunities on the institution's dime.

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Motivational Interviewing allows the student and advisor to work in collaboration, with the student choosing initial behavioral changes to improve the current situation. These small first steps can lead to additional behaviors beneficial to the academic success of the student. 

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The number of students with documented disabilities - physical, cognitive, psychiatric or medical - has been steadily increasing on campuses across the country...Advisors are uniquely positioned to support students with disabilities and awareness of changes in the law, such as with the ADA Amendment Act, are important. 

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Advisors on campuses across the U.S. have noted increased numbers of military students enrolled at their institutions...higher education must respond to the needs of these students with programs that aid smooth transitions if these students' collegiate experiences are to be meaningful. 

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An increasing number of veterans are attending college campuses...It is important that academic advisors and counselors have an understanding of PTSD and the military culture in order to better serve these proud service members. 

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Advisors are one of the most important supports for returning veteran students as they get comfortable with being with younger and less mature students and decide if they want to stay in school. 

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Many experts see a nationwide decline in math-preparedness. The NACADA Two-Year College Commission suggests that advisors discuss a series of questions in regard to working with students underprepared in mathematics.

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From June 2005 through December 2011, this publication was titled Academic Advising Today: Lighting Student Pathways. Articles included in these archived editions will be presented in a compiled version as well as broken down into individual articles to facilitate search capacity. News features from this period may be attained by contacting the Managing Editor.

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Academic Advising Today, a NACADA member benefit, is published four times annually by NACADA: The Global Community for Academic Advising. NACADA holds exclusive copyright for all Academic Advising Today articles and features. For complete copyright and fair use information, including terms for reproducing material and permissions requests, see Publication Guidelines.

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