Charlie Nutt, NACADA Executive Director
As I enter my 10th year in the NACADA Executive Office, I am excited to see the continued expansion of the Association and the academic advising profession. While our steadily growing membership demonstrates NACADA’s financial health and stability, I am most proud of the work done by our NACADA leadership and Executive Office staff to expand our vast resources, services, and events that support our members and the profession. In the first five months of 2011 we have held two Institutes, a Seminar, ten Regional Conferences (including two in Canada), and two Academic Advising Research Symposiums. We have broadcast a series of highly cost effective and professional webcasts, published numerous member authored articles in the NACADA Clearinghouse of Academic Advising Resources, NACADA Journal, and Academic Advising Today, and conducted a national academic advising survey. Currently in production are two monographs for publication this fall, and we have expanded our partnership with Jossey-Bass Publishers to include work on an upcoming text on effective academic advising approaches. NACADA has recognized and supported a record number of our members through our comprehensive Awards Program, a variety of graduate student scholarships, and grants to support research in the field. We also have continued implementation of our online membership, registration, and purchasing system and expanded the Association’s utilization of social media technologies to increase member participation in the Association and to enhance the impact for both event attendees and non-attendees. Last, but not least, the Board of Directors has continued our important initiative in global awareness and expansion supported by NACADA leaders visiting Australia, Hong Kong, and the Netherlands to work with colleges and universities on the importance of academic advising to student success and the importance of NACADA to academic advising globally. All of this and more has happened in just five short months!
As we know from the work of John Gardner and George Kuh, student success, retention, and persistence is enhanced by student involvement and participation in a variety of High Impact activities. NACADA enhances the success of academic advisors and the academic advising profession in higher education by supporting High Impact activities for academic advisors no matter their institutional type or size, their role (professional, faculty, peer, graduate student, or administrator), or their location in the global community of higher education.
High Impact activities for academic advisors and the academic advising profession are:
- involvement in comprehensive on-going professional development which includes research, theory, practice, and information – not just institutional issues and policies – through a variety of formats, activities, and events.
- development and implementation of assessment plans for academic advising, including student learning outcomes and program effectiveness.
- involvement in research in the field of student success and academic advising, including reading, analyzing, and utilizing research as well as conducting research on our campuses and utilizing results to enhance student success.
- rewards for professional growth and development through institutional advising career ladders or career growth paths.
- involvement in a common reading experience in an advising unit, institution, or within the international academic advising community.
- attendance and participation in NACADA’s professional development opportunities. This may include attendance at a NACADA institute, seminar, or conference and utilization of technology to participate in a NACADA webcast or one of NACADA’s growing social media opportunities.
- submission of an article about the profession, institutional/unit advising success, or individual advising interests for consideration in a NACADA publication.
- construction of a professional network across the globe for common scholarship, support, and encouragement within the academic advising field.
The High Impact activities listed above are just a few of the things we must do to grow in our profession if we are to become recognized as experts in student success initiatives in higher education. There are many more high impact activities that advisors can share with their colleagues through a presentation at a NACADA state, allied association, regional, or annual conference or through an article in one of the NACADA publications.
As we end one academic year and begin preparations for a new academic year, I propose a challenge to each of you. Set Three Goals for the 2011-2012 academic year. Make one goal focus on a high impact activity, either from the list above or from your individual professional development plan. Share your goals and how you will achieve them with colleagues – in your unit, at your institution, or through Facebook or Twitter. Then carry out atleast one activity each week to help you achieve these goals. Each month discuss your progress (or lack of progress) toward your goals with colleagues so that next year at this time you can celebrate your achievements, analyze the challenges in reaching your goals, and make plans for changes or new goals for the 2012-2013 academic year. I hope many of you will consider choosing me as one of the colleagues with whom you will share your goals, achievements, and challenges during the next year. Reach me at firstname.lastname@example.org, “Charlie Nutt” on Facebook, or @charlienutt on Twitter.
Take some time this summer to rest and re-energize before moving into a new, exciting, and challenging year. Please remember that NACADA is always here to support you and the profession!
Charlie Nutt, Executive Director
NACADA: The Global Community for Academic Advising
Cite this article using APA style as: Nutt, C. (2011, June). From the executive director: Making a difference - high impact activities the enrich advisors and promote student success. Academic Advising Today, 34
(2). Retrieved from [insert url here]