Moving Toward Funding an Advising Center Using Student Advising Fees
William P. Fleming, Sam Houston State University
Something had to be done about the advising practices at
Sam Houston State University. In the years before research and
scholarship became focal faculty achievements, students were assigned to
faculty advisors across campus. But the days when faculty could devote
the time necessary to adequately advise students were soon over. As the
emphasis on research increased, faculty service areas became back burner
items. This shift occurred even as it became increasingly apparent that
we must provide closer and more intrusive advising for students
struggling in their college courses.
Encouragement from the Administration
Talk of the need for an advising center circulated among
faculty, but no changes occurred. Then a new Vice President for Academic
Affairs came to Sam Houston, bringing with him the knowledge and desire
for an advising center. Even so, financing was unavailable until the
new Sam Houston president placed funding forefront in talks with Faculty
Senate. Spurred by these talks, a committee was appointed to research
Sam Houston student fees as compared to fees charged at other Texas
universities. This group discovered that Sam Houston had some of the
lowest overall fees in the state.
To provide students with quality advising services, we needed to find
funds beyond those appropriated by the state. In our comparisons with
other universities—even those of a similar size student-body within our
system—we found that many increased fees, charged additional course
fees, or charged advising fees.
The Proposal for an Advising Fee
In February 2002, a recommendation was submitted to the
president advocating various additional fees including a designated
Advising Center Fee. Rationale for this fee included the complexity of
academic programs and the regulations associated with certain degree
requirements. The advising fee would defray the costs of advising with
income used to pay the wages of the staff associated with the University
Advising Center and the costs of center operation.
The committee cited fees at comparable institutions
including the University of Texas where various amounts are charged for
advising--from $50 to $135 per semester or $36 to $101 per summer
session--depending on the student's major, classification, and college
affiliation. We proposed a $50 per semester / $25 per summer session
advising fee per student.
Convincing the Students of the Need
Now came the challenge. Strategy talks began when the
president stated that he would formally propose increased fees to the
Board of Regents only if fees garnered student approval. We knew: (1)
many students, perhaps even a majority, had experienced poor advising;
(2) advising was mandatory for at least 1/3 of students (below 2.5 GPA,
no SHSU GPA, TASP restrictions); (3) students, no matter how familiar
they were with the catalog, did not know the intricacies of curricula;
(4) many students did not know how to interpret degree plans; and (5)
students doing poor academic work needed special advising. With these
thoughts in mind, we approached the Student Government Association with
the largest fee increase ever proposed.
Fee proposals were presented at four Student Government
assemblies by the Vice President for Academic Affairs, the Vice
President for Student Affairs, the Dean of the College of Arts and
Sciences, and the Chair of the Faculty Senate.
At each meeting, the floor was open for questions. Some
students suggested that they should be able to self-advise using the
catalogue. Others countered that self-advising would be impossible for
transfer students designing a degree plan with course substitutions.
Many could take courses they didn’t need. Other students noted that they
were frustrated when their advisors were unavailable and had nowhere to
turn; this was particularly true for students affected by mandatory
advisement. Some questioned an advising fee for graduate students, since
they are advised in their individual colleges, and suggested that
graduate student advising fees be used to promote various graduate
Approval of the Fee
The Student Government approved the fees. Although the
vote was not unanimous, students recognized the need and accepted the
proposed solution. Board of Regents approval took place in May 2002, and
the Advising Center became a reality. Completely financed by the
Advising Center fee, the Student Advising and Mentoring Center (SAM) now
serves Sam Houston undergraduates.
Want to know more about funding and staffing of the
Student Advising and Mentoring Center? “Financing an Advising Center by
Using Student Advising Fees,” will be presented as a concurrent session
at the 2003 National NACADA Conference (Friday, October 3, 8:45 a.m.).
William P. Fleming
Sam Houston State University
From the President
Betsy McCalla-Wriggin, NACADA President
Last month my husband and I attended the christening of
our newest grandchild, Lainey Antonia Wriggins. She is just 12 weeks
old, but already is demonstrating some strong preferences and a rather
assertive attitude. Her 4 year old brother Jack, whose original
suggestion for his baby sister’s name was Home Depot, has still not
quite decided if he is glad that she has arrived and created rather
significant changes in his life…..
As I was thinking about Lainey and Jack and reflecting on
my time as President of NACADA, it struck me how endings, beginnings,
and change are part of all of our lives.
Even associations go through the same experience. Over these past two
years NACADA ended one phase of its development, and we began a new
phase last fall as we moved into the new organizational structure.
Change has been constant throughout these challenging times…and I am
sure that more changes will occur as the transition continues.
I feel very fortunate to have been a participant in this
phase of NACADA’s growth and development. To all of you who offered
encouragement and support as we moved through major re-structuring,
thank you. When we began these discussions in January of 2000, we did
not know the shape or form of the new structure. But, we trusted the
process and through lots of feedback from members, created a new way of
operating for NACADA. To those of you who challenged us….thank you, too.
Through respectful disagreement, you helped us refine, rethink, and
As you think about your own situation and reflect on your daily
activities, consider the students you see who are experiencing a new
beginning, an ending, or some type of change. Many face all three at the
same time….especially the new students and those getting ready to
graduate. Even though many of these changes are positive and
self-initiated, there is still very often some degree of anxiety. In
your advising role you encourage, support and sometimes challenge which
gives many students the courage to grow and develop in very exciting
So, as the summer comes to a close and as the new
academic year begins, keep up the wonderful work you do with your
students. You are having a very positive impact in their lives.
Thanks, too, for the support you have given me as President…and for having such a positive
impact in my life.
From the Executive Office
Roberta 'Bobbie' Flaherty, NACADA Executive Director
annual NACADA National Conference will be here soon and has the
Executive Office buzzing. The National Conference was the first
professional development activity offered by NACADA and remains as a
firm foundation upon which to build new activities and resources to meet
the needs of our members. NACADA has been fortunate to have
consistently introduced successful new activities and resources based on
informal feedback among the leadership and the members. To continue
this success, however, it is important that we continue to hear from the
members exactly how the organization can assist in continued
professional development and enhancement of academic advising.
The Board of Directors developed the core of an updated
Strategic Plan during their mid-year meeting and has since asked each
unit within the organization to contribute ideas on how we might address
the goals of the association. Although we received some very good ideas
from this process, it would be even more helpful if we could hear
directly from the membership as to what you would like to see from the
association. Therefore, I ask that you review the abbreviated copy of
the Strategic Plan objectives included in this Newsletter and tell us
(the Executive Office, your Commission Chair, your Region Chair, or any
other NACADA leader) what you think we should be doing to address these
goals. Your suggestions will be forwarded to the appropriate governing
unit for consideration and we will better know what you want!
Member feedback concerning the need for an on-line graduate program
has led to the partnership with Kansas State University to offer an
on-line graduate certificate program. Although not a degree program, it
will allow members to shorten the time on campus to complete a degree if
they can transfer these on-line courses into their graduate degree
programs. (Be sure to ascertain transferability before enrolling.)
National Conference evaluations / feedback always
influence changes in the National Conference and this year created the
establishment of some “invited” pre-conference workshops, the Commission
Roundtable sessions for additional networking and information sharing
opportunities, and an additional social activity for enhanced networking
and FUN! The Summer Institute on Academic Advising and the Academic
Advising Administrators’ Institute are also heavily driven by
Another example of feedback response is our upcoming new
Assessment of Academic Advising Seminar. The Administrators’ Institute
2003 participants expressed a desire for more in-depth information on
Assessment in Advising, so we will immediately follow the 2004
Administrators’ Institute in St. Pete Beach, FL, in February, with an
Assessment of Academic Advising Seminar. It is our intention that the
Seminar will continue each year but focus on a different topic to
address the continuing need for information on emerging issues.
Now is the time to provide your feedback so that we can develop
activities or resources to address YOUR needs! See you in Dallas!
Roberta “Bobbie” Flaherty
NACADA Executive Director
2004 NACADA Leadership Election Information
The next NACADA Leadership
election will be held in January-February 2004. For a complete list of
NACADA leadership opportunities available in the next election, visit
the NACADA web site at http://www.nacada.ksu.edu/Election/index.htm. You
will find a link to the 2004 election information on this web page as
well as under the “About NACADA” tab on the NACADA home page.
Nominations for the various positions can be submitted electronically
using an online form on the NACADA web site. Forms will also be
available in the NACADA display booth in the Exhibits area at the
National Conference in Dallas as well as in the back of the conference
program. These printed forms can be submitted while at the conference.
The deadline for submitting nominations to the Executive Office for the
2004 election is Wednesday, October 15, 2003.
More information about the 2004 election procedures will
be sent to members this fall in the monthly Member Highlights e-mails.
If you have questions about this upcoming election, contact the NACADA
Executive Office at email@example.com or call (785) 532-5717.
2003 NACADA Strategic Plan
Abbreviated and In Progress, July 2003
VISION: NACADA will be the acknowledged leader within the global education community for the theory, delivery, application, and advancement of academic advising to enhance student learning and development.
Mission 1: Advance the body of knowledge of academic advising
Strategy 1: Promote, support, and conduct research.
Task 1: Distribute RFPs on critical issues to Student Personnel Grad Programs.
Task 2: Develop an endorsed definition of Academic Advising.
Mission 2: Address the academic advising needs of higher education.
Strategy 1: Identify, prioritize, and address critical issues facing academic advising.
Task 1: Survey Commission members to assess needs
Task 2: Update Core Values statement and CAS Standards
Strategy 2: Collect information about the environments in which academic advising operates.
Strategy 3: Ensure effectiveness of NACADA organization
Task 1: Review Financial Audit
Task 2: Review and develop annual budget process
Task 3: Send letters to Leadership members' campuses acknowledging contributions.
Task 4: Create training for Chairs in each division.
Task 5: Conduct needs assessment for Region Chairs
Task 6: Develop protocol for review of regions
Task 7: Solicit input from members on what NACADA can do for them.
Task 8: Initiate program to increase non-dues revenue
Task 9: Develop Administrative Division Handbook
Task 10: Review value and purpose of SI scholarships.
Strategy 4: Provide comprehensive professional development opportunities to the academic advising community.
Task 1: Update training video and add diversity issues.
Task 2: Provide advising Graduate coursework at a distance.
Task 3: Reach out to faculty with one day seminars
Task 4: Develop attendance requirements for NACADA certificate.
Mission 3: Champion the role of academic advising to enhance student learning and development.
Strategy 1: Identify and develop strategies for fostering collaboration with various advising constituencies.
Task 1: Work with regional related organizations on regional conferences.
Task 2: Establish relationship with AACSB
Task 3: Establish relationship with regional accrediting bodies.
Strategy 2: Enhance NACADA's global visibility and credibility as the resource for academic advising.
Task 1: Explore advisor certification
Task 2: Develop plan for regular contact with CAOs
Mission 4 : Affirm the role of academic advising in supporting institutional mission and vitality.
Strategy 1: Influence leaders in higher education to support quality academic advising.
Task 1: Regions establish contact with non-member institution officials
Strategy 2: Influence public policy relating to academic advising
Mission 5: Encourage the contributions of all members and promotes the involvement of diverse populations.
Strategy 1: Assess member needs and talents.
Task 1: Identify areas needing additional minority representation
Task 2: Identify minority members to get involved in Association.
Task 3: Establish a Clearinghouse of interested minority members
Task 4: Review and recommend changes to Institutional and Allied membership categories.
Strategy 2: Create an environment that promotes maximum individual inclusion and growth.
Task 1: Develop program for advisor exchanges.
Strategy 3: Expand growth opportunities.
Task 1: Recruit CIG Division Regional Liaisons
Task 2: Encourage new membership
Task 3: Increase State Drive-in workshops/seminars
Task 4: Identify Native American institutions and invite, encourage, support involvement.
Advisor Certification: A History and Update
Virginia N. Gordon, Task Force on Advisor Certification Chair
The first NACADA Task Force on
Advisor Certification was established in 2001 to explore the feasibility
of creating a “program to award certificates in academic advising to
NACADA members.” That group recommended that certificates be awarded and
standards leading to such certificates be established. The reasons for
establishing such a program were to:
- help individual advisors establish and maintain credibility with the aid of such external standards;
- give novice advisors clear goals to strive for; give
administrators external standards to refer to on the hiring,
evaluation, and promotion of academic advisors;
- give colleges and universities standards for various assessment and accreditation purposes; and
- influence graduate programs related to academic advising.
The NACADA Board of Directors accepted the Task Force’s
recommendation and charged a second Task Force in 2002 to continue this
exploration. This group was assigned the task of recommending the
specific categories of advising competencies that all effective advisors
should be able to demonstrate. The Task Force proposed that
competencies in the following core areas of advisor knowledge and skills
are essential to effective advising:
Foundations Knowledge: In
this category, advisors will describe and explain their advising
philosophy and the theoretical frameworks that influence their advising
approaches. They will be knowledgeable about the CAS Standards and will
describe how they incorporate NACADA’s Core values into their advising.
The knowledge and practical implications of legal and ethical advising
issues may be included here.
Knowledge of College Student Characteristics:
Advisors will have a general knowledge of the
characteristics of college students and will be able to demonstrate
their knowledge of the student demographics of their institution and the
unique characteristics of the students they advise. They will have an
understanding of multicultural differences and how this influences the
way they approach students from different cultures. Although student
development theory is an obvious choice, they may demonstrate
familiarity with any theory (from any discipline) that has implications
for understanding the characteristics of the students they advise.
Knowledge of Higher Education:
Since advisors work in a variety of higher education settings, it is
crucial they have a knowledge of the history of higher education in
general and their institution specifically. Advisors should also be
familiar with the current issues facing higher education including
ethical and legal implications affecting advising. They should have a
basic knowledge of academic disciplines and the development and
rationale for the curriculum.
Career Advising Knowledge and Skills:
Many students expect their advisor to discuss career issues
that relate to their overall college education and the occupational
relationships with their academic major(s) in particular. They should be
familiar with the career resources that are appropriate for student
access, such as the Internet, career library, and other career services
on their campuses. They should be able to demonstrate their
understanding of the career decision-making process in the context of
advising and should have the advising skills to assist students to
confirm, select, or change a major.
Communication and Interpersonal Skills:
How advisors communicate with students is an obvious
requisite for effective advising. Advisors must demonstrate their
ability to relate to individuals and groups of students using
communication, helping (counseling), and problem-solving skills.
Competent writing skills are important as advisors communicate with
students and colleagues through e-mail and other technologies.
Knowledge and Application of Advising Skills at Local Institution:
Although advisors work in a higher education setting, their knowledge
of their local institution is paramount. They should be able to
demonstrate knowledge of their institution’s mission and goals,
institutional policies and procedures. They must be experts in the
discipline and curricula for which they advise. They should be familiar
with retention issues on their local campus, graduation requirements,
and both campus and community referral resources.
Technological Knowledge and Skills:
Advisors must demonstrate their knowledge and usage of their
institution’s technological systems that are integral to academic
advising. They should be equally competent in other technological tools
(e.g., e-mail, Web browsers) and tasks (e.g., downloading software, file
These knowledge and skills are the core competencies that have been
identified by the Task Force thus far. Since identifying these
competencies is still in the formative stage, some may be added,
deleted, or changed. The next step is to explore how advisors might
demonstrate their competencies in these areas. Several methods have been
identified completion of approved workshops or seminars;
“knowledge-based” examinations that may be offered in person or on the
Web; or a combination of workshops or seminars; or
knowledge-and-skill-based tests that would apply these competencies to
the workplace. To that end, the NACADA Executive Office staff is
currently in contact with consulting firms that work with professional
organizations considering certification programs. These consultants help
organizations move through the process of planning, developing, and
designing programs. In addition, the NACADA Board asked that the
Professional Development Committee and the Task Force look at what
professional development activities might contribute to the earning of a
“seat time” certificate acknowledging exposure to these areas of
knowledge. That analysis is in progress.
NACADA is striving to address your professional
development needs in a number of ways. Be sure to express your needs as
they arise. More information should be available at the National
Conference in Dallas in October.
Virginia N. Gordon
Ohio State University – Main Campus
Some Current Issues Facing International Students: How Can Advisors Help?
Patrick T. Slowinski, NACADA ESL/International Student Advising Interest Section Chair
The tragedies of September 11,
2001, have had lasting impacts on many who pursue higher education in
the United States. International students represent one group that
definitely needs our assistance at this time. Some particular concerns
involve helping international students understand how to stay in status
at all times, and to deal with any negative stereotypes that may have
emerged since some of those involved in the September 11, 2001, attacks
were in the United States on student visas.
The Bureau of Immigration and Citizenship
Services (BCIS) has implemented SEVIS (Student and Exchange Visitor
Information System) to better track international students as they are
studying in the United States. To better understand SEVIS and some
potential pitfalls for international students (e.g., failure to report a
change of address, failure to maintain full-time student loads, etc.)
Our colleagues at the National Association of International Educators
have provided quality information, links to the BCIS, and resources to
help us assist international students, so they may remain in the United
States legally. Please visit: http://www.nafsa.org/sevisresources for
this timely information.
In addition to receiving correct
and updated information, international students require advisors who are
willing to go the extra mile for them. Some particular challenges that
advisors can help international student with include: dealing with
culture shock, adapting to new teaching and learning environments,
understanding the American higher education system, understanding US
social norms, and adapting to food, climate, and legal systems.
Some international students may
also feel they are discriminated against because they may pose a
security threat to the United States. Ultimately, advisors can intervene
this fall to identify international students and assist them in
adapting to a new environment and new security measures. Often an
understanding voice or face can do more than we know in helping
international students make the necessary adaptations as they study in
the United States.
Patrick T. Slowinski
Brigham Young University
Get Better Not Bitter!
Beatrice L. Logan and Annie H. Turman, Georgia State University
Is your job a source of stress in your life? Do you
feel overworked and unappreciated? Do you feel irritable about minor
things at work, or need a huge effort to complete the simplest tasks?
Does it seem like you are always geared up, need to hurry up, catch up, or shut up? Are you fed up? If you answered yes to these questions, you could be the victim of too much stress.
In the advisement profession, seldom a day passes in
which someone doesn’t make a stress-related comment, such as “I’m burned
out,” or “I’m under too much stress.” While few of us, if asked, can
provide a formal definition of stress, most are all too familiar with
how it feels. Simply stated, stress is the physical and emotional
condition felt when we are excited, face change, feel powerless, or feel
Let's face it, everyone gets stressed out, but it doesn't
have to take over our lives. Can we eliminate job stressors? No, --and
it’s a good thing we can’t. A certain amount of stress is required in
our lives to motivate us to reach new levels of performance. What we can
do is recognize that we have the power to choose our actions.
We don't have to become upset, tense, or irritable. These reactions
often make situations worse, and can have harmful effects. Choose to
positively manage stressful situations. Although the choice may be
different depending on the situation, realize that we can control our
Listed below are some stress management techniques that
can help minimize the negative effects of stress. Since no single
technique is ideal for every situation, try each technique, deciding
which is the best to manage the stress of a particular circumstance.
Realize that the success of a technique is determined by the commitment
to change and the regularity with which the method if practiced.
Daily Reflection. Each
day is a special gift, an opportunity to serve and be a catalyst for
change. To create a link between your spirituality and the job, start
each day with 15 minutes of quiet reflection time. Visualize a positive
day and go forth with an unrelenting commitment to exercise a positive
attitude, fairness, patience, honesty, and integrity.
Deep Breathing. Sitting
upright, close your eyes, relax and focus your mind on an object.
Inhale slowly through your nose; hold your breath and count to eight. As
you exhale slowly through your mouth, repeat 'Re---LAX “ four times.
Imagery. Close your eyes. Imagine a calm, beautiful scene. Picture yourself at that location. Repeat affirmative phrases.
Neck Rolls. Sitting
erect with your shoulders level let your chin drop forward. Slowly roll
your head in a full circle. Repeat five times, alternating directions.
cup your hands and apply firm circular strokes to your forehead,
cheeks, neck, shoulder and other body areas that are tense.
is FIRST AID for the soul. You cannot laugh and hold tension at the
same time. Whatever makes you laugh, cultivate it. Start a personal
humor collection file of your favorite comic strips, jokes, e-mails,
Change Your Attitude. What
messages are you sending to yourself? Some stress comes from negative
thoughts — grudges, hurt, and anger. Look on the bright side and lighten
your load. Repeat affirmations like, ' I am filled with inner peace.”
Shred List. Write
down names of people, worries, pressures and concerns that contribute
to your stress. When your list is complete, S-H-R-E-D it.
Manage Your Time. In
descending order of importance, make a list of the things you need to
do each day. Complete each task, one at a time. Learn to set limits for
yourself and say 'no' to others. At the end of each day, reflect on your
accomplishments, not the unfinished tasks.
Talk It Out. You
do not have to cope alone. Sometimes just talking about concerns can
help put them into perspective. Find an objective person whom you trust
and vent your worries and frustrations.
Stress is inevitable, but it doesn’t have to make you
tense, irritable, upset, and unhappy. You have the choice to GET BETTER
or BITTER. Be productive, GET BETTER! Make the commitment to manage
stress and enhance your health and happiness.
For additional stress management techniques, attend the What’s an Advisor to Do? Coping with Job Stressors session at the NACADA National Conference in Dallas.
Beatrice L. Logan & Annie H. Turman
Georgia State University
firstname.lastname@example.org & email@example.com
Carlson, Richard. Don’t Sweat the Small Stuff. New York: Hyperion, 1997.
Hill, Napoleon, and W. Clement Stone. Success Through a Positive Mental
Attitude. New York: Simon & Schuster, 1992.
Johnson, Spencer. Who Moved My Cheese, New York: G. P. Pitman’s Son, 1998.