Susan Campbell, NACADA President
While it hardly seems possible, Regional Conferences are just around the corner and I know that conference chairs and committees are busy gearing up for another year of successful meetings. In my opinion, this is the most exciting part of the year for it provides opportunities for us to share with our regional colleagues practices that have worked and to discuss ideas of mutual importance. These conferences also demonstrate - through their continued growth and development - that the member-driven nature of NACADA is indeed powerful.
As a Board, we continue to work on those items noted in my December 2006 article for Academic Advising Today: building on and supporting goals and initiatives of the past, reviewing and codifying policies and procedures to strengthen and sustain our future as an association, and continuing to broaden our reach within higher education as the professional association for academic advising. I want to use this article as a way to update you on the Board's progress with regard to these items.
First, the Board continues to build on and support existing NACADA goals and initiatives. To begin this, as a Board we agreed to meet monthly to broaden our communication with each other. These telephone conference calls have been extremely helpful in keeping us all more in touch with the activities of the Association. Most recently, the Board approved the piloting of the Emerging Leaders Program. This approval allows this important initiative to move forward to achieve its intent - to provide opportunities as well as support for NACADA members to engage in leadership positions. Of particular interest to this program is supporting NACADA members from underrepresented groups.
Second, our Bylaws Task Force, chaired by Board Member Jenny Bloom, has been meeting regularly to identify issues that would more closely align the NACADA By-Laws with the governance structure of the Association. They will be presenting their report - and recommendations - at the Board's mid-year meeting in late March. The Policy Development Task Force, chaired by Board Member Jane Jacobson, is organizing to do its work in identifying policy areas for the Association that should be developed in order to codify and guide practice. At the mid-year Board meeting, we will focus on the work of these Task Forces, as well as on the Association's Strategic Plan. In the end, all four - By-Laws, Governance, Policy, and Planning - are as important to our future sustainability as they are inextricably intertwined.
Third, as an Association we continue to strengthen our ties with our brother/sister associations and expand our voice within the international community. With regard to the former, we continue to support the work of others with regard to the student experience. In response to a request for a recommendation, our own Jocelyn Harney (Dean of Student Services, College of DuPage), along with NACADA Past President Betsy McCalla-Wriggins (Higher Education Specialist for the Center for the Advancement of Learning, Rowan University), will be joining a National Resource Center teleconference in April. NACADA Vice-President Nancy Walburn will represent NACADA at the national meeting of the Collegiate Honors Councils.
With regard to the international community, we continue to build upon the strength of our relationship with our Canadian Colleagues. In April, NACADA has been again invited to participate in the international conference on academic advising in Dubai, United Arab Emirates; in May, the Higher Education Academy will host its annual conference at the University of Edinburgh, with co-sponsorship by NACADA; we also continue to receive inquiries about the work of NACADA, those most recent come from Australia. We are also considering pursuing publications that will highlight international higher education and advising practices. All of this is proof positive that academic advising continues to grow in importance in higher education AND that NACADA continues to be viewed as the leader in academic advising!
With this update, I wish you all the best as 2007 begins. May your year be full of academic advising successes!
Susan Campbell, President
National Academic Advising Association
Cite this article using APA style as: Campbell, S. (2007, March). From the president: Strengthening and building NACADA. Academic Advising Today, 30(1). Retrieved from [insert url here]