Supporting Academic Advising: Serving our Stakeholders
Carol A. Cartwright, 2004 NACADA Pacesetter Award Recipient
Public universities exist for the
public good. That statement of our historic role implies a social
compact based on trust: Students realize that, regardless of tuition
prices, higher education is the best investment they will make in their
long-term economic futures. Those students trust the university to
provide an education that is not only of a high quality but also
adaptable to changing employment conditions and capable of improving the
quality of their lives.
At Kent State University, to meet the demands of state
budget cuts, we have reallocated resources and streamlined processes,
but always with the goal of protecting that public trust by keeping our
academic programs strong and nourishing student success. Our studies
show that students succeed most often when we have made some personal
connection that ties them to the university. Academic advisors play a
crucial role in linking this human touch with our university mission.
We all have a story of someone who supported us, gave us inspiration,
looked out for our well being, and generally encouraged us to achieve.
Advisors, whether they are full-time professional advisors or faculty in
an advising role, represent the direct contact that is so important to
promoting student success and connectedness to the institution. At Kent
State, the influence of our advisors is obvious. We feel it is essential
in turn to provide systematic approaches that ensure our academic
advising continues to assist us in supporting and retaining our
Kent State's current strategic plan
focuses on meeting the needs of the people served by the university -
'stakeholders' that include everyone from students to the businesses
that hire them. In order to provide leadership on the objectives, we
must understand the needs. When we attempt to specify the desires of the
student body we find that students respond best to individuals and
offices that offer direct, instant contact. It is for this reason that
we have worked diligently for a strong advising network at Kent State
University. Advisors represent direct communication and outreach to the
student body, and the relationships they create with students promote
educational as well as lifelong success.
Since my arrival at Kent State in 1991, we have
established the Student Advising Center with eight full-time advisors to
assist exploratory students, created the Retention Advising Initiative
with eight advisors who focus on freshman students, developed a Faculty
Advising Workshop Series to enable an annual cohort of 30 faculty
members to hone their advising skills, and established the Kent Academic
Support & Advising Association to encourage professional
development and research for all advising staff and faculty.
With our priorities driving decision-making, we reallocated resources
to substantially enhance advising services. These efforts primarily
benefit students through higher educational achievement. But when we
enhance our educational mission, we also better serve the institution,
community, and state. The result is a better informed public that
understands the importance of education and its positive role in
society. Effective advising fosters students who are more likely to be
advocates about the need for educational funding, more likely to stay
active with the university, and more likely to share their views on
education with future generations. As graduates, they also contribute to
the social, economic and cultural climate of the nation. The entire
process begins with the initial relationship.
A university's senior leadership cannot interact with
every student as much as we would like to. Our best course as a
university is to maintain a strong academic institution and to support
advisors and advising programs. As a public university whose mission is
improving the economic and cultural life of our state, we depend on the
important contributions academic advisors make to student success.
Carol A. Cartwright, President
Kent State University
2004 NACADA Pacesetter Award Recipient
From the President
Ruth Darling, NACADA President
By now, each of you have received a copy of the 2004
NACADA National Conference Brochure in the mail or have reviewed the
information on the Association’s web site. I hope you are clearing your
calendars and making plans to attend our 28th National Conference where
we will celebrateNACADA’s 25th anniversary!
Over the past 25 years, NACADA has grown from a young organization with
a charter membership of 429 to an association with over 7,800 members,
serving critical roles in the development of the profession and the
implementation of quality academic advising on our campuses that focus
on student learning.
The conference theme “Building Bridges: Advisors as Architects for
the Future” is particularly meaningful as we reflect on the role NACADA
plays in the professional lives of our members and ultimately in the
academic success of our students. Under the leadership of Tom Grites
(Academic Advising) and Maura Ivanick (Core Values), task forces have
been focusing on two key areas for our Association, the development of a
statement on the definition of academic advising from the Association’s
perspective and the review and update of our Core Values Statement.
These two documents along with our strategic plan should provide the
vision (or the “Bridge!”) for NACADA, our membership and the
institutions we serve as we engage in our daily work.
An important part of this development and review process
is to obtain feedback from you on the drafts of these documents. Please
note the brief article in this newsletter concerning the statements on
defining academic advising and the core values. Click on the link that
will take you to the drafts where you can provide feedback on-line to
the task forces. Also, at the National Conference, a roundtable session
has been scheduled for Friday, October 8 at 10 am, where Task Force
members will be present to review the process of writing and updating
the statements and to share in a discussion of the various issues. These
types of discussions are critical to the Association’s vitality and the
sense of vision we share as members of NACADA.
Best wishes to you as the summer orientations and academic terms come
to a close and you prepare for another academic year. Remember that
NACADA is an ever present resource for you via the web site, telephone
or in person! I look forward to seeing you in Cincinnati, October 6 – 9!
Ruth A. Darling
From the Executive Office
Roberta 'Bobbie' Flaherty, NACADA Executive Director
Happy New Year! Yes, those of us in academe
get to celebrate a second time as we begin the new academic year. This
is a time of renewal also, as the majority of our memberships renew in
September, and our leadership “renews” at the end of the national
conference when our newly elected leaders assume their responsibilities
and begin their work for the New NACADA Year.
Through the dedicated work of our members, NACADA has
made great strides in promoting advising as a profession, raising
awareness of the value of effective advising for our students, and
providing professional development for advisors and administrators. With
a record membership of over 7800, the Association relies on volunteer
leaders to provide ideas, feedback, and leadership.
Complete information regarding the NACADA leadership positions to be
elected in early 2005, along with a request for nominations for those
positions, is available on the NACADA Web site.
Now is the time to step forward! Nominate yourself or
someone you know for a leadership position. Our goal is to provide
members with a choice; as such, we need at least two candidates for each
position. Whether you are new to the association or a veteran member,
check out “About NACADA” on our Web site to select from the myriad
opportunities available to contribute to your Association and our
profession. Visit with your current region or commission chair about
ways you can get involved.
Volunteers are the heart of this Association. Those
choosing to volunteer often express as benefits of their involvement –
opportunities to learn from others, creation of a network of colleagues
for advice and support, professional growth through the exchange of
ideas, insight regarding operations at other institutions that can
translate to enhancements to their own programs, validation that what
they are doing is “right on”, a network for employment opportunities,
and most often, new and deep friendships!
The association management literature I read advises that members of
differing generations often have different participation goals. Most
notably, “baby boomers” tend to participate in an association in a
sequential manner, committing to long-term continuous service to the
Association. However younger association members tend to be more
“cyclical” in their involvement, wanting repeated short and brief
involvement (give me a task, I’ll do it, and that’s the end for now).
There is a place in NACADA for both. So, no matter how, or how long, you
want to be involved, consider starting now.
Check out the leadership opportunities available and volunteer to serve. NACADA needs you!
Roberta 'Bobbie' Flaherty, Executive Director
National Academic Advising Association
Member Input Needed!
Two major initiatives of President Darling this year have been the review and revision of the NACADA Core Values for Academic Advising and the development of a NACADA Definition of Academic Advising.
Task Forces, chaired by Maura Ivanick and Tom Grites, have developed
drafts for the review and discussion by the membership before approval
by the Board of Directors.
Review these important documents, and then please connect
to the NACADA Discussion Board and provide input and comments on the
drafts. In addition, there will be an opportunity for discussion and
input at the national conference in Cincinnati.
The NACADA Journal Editors, Terry L. Kuhn
and Gary M. Padak,
worked hard to put the Journal back on schedule without skipping any
issues. In October/November of 2004, you may expect to receive a double
issue (Volume 24, Issues 1 & 2) which will accomplish this goal! We
thank the Co-Editors, Copy Editor Nancy Vesta, and Marsha Miller
, from the NACADA Executive Office, as well as the many authors and book reviewers for making this possible!
First Graduate of the Kansas State University / NACADA Graduate Certificate in Academic Advising
Congratulations to Ben Chamberlain, who
is the first graduate of the K-State/NACADA Graduate Certificate in
Academic Advising. Ben, also a recent graduate of the College Student
Personnel program at K-State and Graduate Assistant in the NACADA
Executive Office, will be an advisor in the College Business at Iowa
State University beginning in September. Congratulations, Ben!
We are pleased to announce keynote speakers for this year’s NACADA National Conference. Nancy L. Zimpher, first woman president of the University of Cincinnati, will speak
at the opening plenary Wednesday evening. Her research in education will
set the tone for an excellent conference. John Wagner,
humorist and professional speaker, will speak Friday morning on how our
sense of humor can help us find more joy in our important work of
helping students succeed in higher education and life.
Humor Helps Us Build Bridges
Advising higher education students is important work
and is fast becoming stressful work. Students have higher service
expectations while administration applies cost containment pressure: ’do
more with less, faster, with higher quality’. Information technology
conversions, new releases, and upgrades constantly challenge us to use
IT to better to serve students. The positive power of humor can help us
avoid stress, stay balanced and ready to have fun designing and building
bridges to success for our students.
Let’s look at “The Three R’s”---Responsibility, Relationships, and Recognition in using humor in our important work.
Each of us has a choice about all that we do. Because we
have a choice, we have response-ability: the ability to choose our
response to the challenges we will face. But we can take ourselves
lightly while we take our jobs, life, and responsibilities seriously. If
you experience a failure or setback, accept responsibility, laugh it
off, learn from it, and do all you can to make it right quickly. If you
experience a conflict, don’t turn it into a contest with a win or lose
outcome. Use your sense of humor to become flexible enough to use the
energy of the conflict to creatively generate positive possibilities.
Laughter helps us flex and loosen-up; it is healing. When you choose to
laugh more, all you can loose is some body fluids. Remember to LAUGH!
Positive, supportive, and cooperative relationships are
essential for success. We can control only ourselves; we can only
influence others. When we try to control or force others to change, we
risk loosing control of ourselves. Positive humor is a powerful
influence. Be happier by being an encourager of others; believe in and
encourage yourself. It is more fun, productive and efficient to work
playfully with others toward a common goal. Choose to accept that each
of us is a unique and special person with our own view of life. Learn to
celebrate the uniqueness and look for the common thread of humanity
that connects us all. Positive humor and smiling enhances communication.
When you smile, get your whole face into it; raise your eyebrows, it
will make you look taller. Remember to SMILE!
High self-esteem will enhance achievement. Build self-esteem
by recognizing all positive efforts. (Especially those little efforts,
they add up.) Be an encourager. The best way to raise your self-esteem
is to raise someone else’s. Use positive humor to make recognition more
acceptable and meaningful. Use humor to accept reality, maintain a
positive perspective, and build bridges to a future success reality. Be
optimistic, and joyful. Replace all pity parties with effort recognition
events. Recognition only works with three types of people - men, women
and children. Remember to CELEBRATE!
There is a choice in everything you do. Keep in mind the
choices you make - make you. Choose to Laugh, Smile and Celebrate as you
build those bridges.
Issues in Advising Graduate and Professional School Students
Virginia Hueske, Advising Graduate and Professional Students Commission Chair
In her recent Chronicle of Higher Education
article, Catherine Stimpson, Dean of the Graduate School of Arts and
Science at New York University, declared the graduate school to be “the
most important stadium on any research-university campus (Stimpson, p.
B7).” Of course, we who advise graduate students and students at
professional schools agree. We sometimes think that teaching and
research assistants are the oil that makes a university engine run, an
unrecognized truth that would be evident only if grad students suddenly
ceased to exist. Nevertheless, as Dean Stimpson points out, things are
somewhat better for graduate students now than when she was a pursuing
Diversity, interdisciplinarity, and professionalism are
gauges by which we measure improvement over the last several decades.
Part of the improvement is due to faculty and professional advisors who
support these changes. The classic relationship between a faculty
research supervisor and a master’s, doctoral or professional student is
still the essential relationship. Built around that, whether at the
large research institution, a small college, or the professional school,
those who advise strive to meet the needs of today’s graduate and
What do our students need? At a minimum, they need accurate, timely
and transparent information about program admission requirements, course
and degree requirements, professional licensing, and certification.
They need to understand such things as the culture of the institution in
general and the department in particular; how to teach undergrad
students and how to navigate research labs; how to apply for grants and
project funding; how to prepare for, attend and present at conferences.
Hard work and a high level of expertise in advising, data management and
administration are required of us all.
Is the master’s student fresh from undergraduate school?
Maybe a little hand-holding is in order, especially if this person is
young and moved directly into the program without ‘real world’
experience. Is the new law school student coming back from the workforce
with spouse and children in tow? Practical advice about health and
childcare may be in order. Is the Ph.D. student nearly finished with
course work and facing qualifying exams? Providing clear directives
about how to navigate the process will lessen anxiety.
Just as for those advising undergraduates, the ways in
which we support our graduate and professional students are myriad,
complex and becoming more so. We work hard to define the realities of
our profession and seek colleagues with whom to communicate and
commiserate. In this process many discover that while we may be seen as
individual “angels of mercy” in our own programs, there are people who
do just what we do in most graduate programs. Both faculty and
professional advisors of post-baccalaureate students face similar
challenges, regardless of the discipline or the university. We must find
each other and learn best practices for serving our students and our
In her article, Dean Stimpson eloquently identifies the mission, or
“deep purpose,” of graduate education as three-fold. 1. “… a place where
the most promising and lively minds of several generations come
together to work on the central problems of the time and of the
disciplines” and “breaks through conventional wisdom.” 2. Graduate
school educates the “next generation of scholars, researchers,
intellectuals, artists, and educators.” We can include with this
doctors, lawyers, and all other graduates of professional schools. 3.
Graduate schools “embody an ideal of a community of advanced inquiry
(Stimpson, p. B7)
It is incumbent upon those of us close to the “oil in the
engine,” i.e., the students themselves, to find the best ways possible
to help to fulfill this mission.
Advising Graduate and Professional Students Commission Chair
The University of Texas at Austin
Stimpson, Catherine R. (June 18, 2004). Traditions and
Winds of Change in Graduate Education. In The Chronicle of Higher
Education, p. B6.
If you would like to find out more regarding advising graduate students, please visit the Advising Graduate and Professional Students Commission Web site.
Connect with colleagues and discuss this article on the Graduate student advising electronic list.
Advising at a Small, Remote Campus
Kevin M. Anderson, Coconino Community College
The blue of Lake Powell dominated
the horizon as we dropped off the last hill approaching Page, AZ, but
it was the ribbon of green wrapped around the plateau on which the town
sat that caught my attention. After 135 miles of reds, browns, yellows
and grays of the landscape north of Flagstaff, the green of the new golf
course really stood out. Off to the right, on the edge of the plateau
just above the fifth hole, was the college. The buildings were new,
modern architecture--all glass and brick and steel—and looked like a
Advising at this remote branch campus was exciting not only because
of the natural beauty, but also because of the variety of cultures and
duties. Page is surrounded by the Navajo Nation, but although the
population of the town was 65% Native American, they made up only 26% of
400 in the student body. Compared to national norms, a larger
percentage of students were female and non-traditional. The economy of
the area relied on tourism and the power plant that supplied electricity
to Phoenix. Each year Page’s 6000 residents hosted three million
visitors from all over the world. One was as likely to hear French,
Japanese or Navajo as English at the supermarket. As an advisor, it was
also likely that a student would have a question for you in the canned
My job description included recruiting, community
outreach, student activities, coordinating financial aid, disability
resources, and career services as well as academic advising. Of course
there were endless committees at the college’s main campus in Flagstaff
that wanted a representative from Page. (Somehow, it was further from
Flagstaff to Page than it was from Page to Flagstaff!). The reality was
that I was always on duty representing the college. Whether making a
presentation at the high school’s college night, promoting registration
on the local radio talk show, running a booth at one of the numerous
events in the city park, or helping to organize the college foundation’s
fundraising golf tournament, it was fun to be so involved in the
Geography is important to understanding the advisor’s role in this
situation. A small town and a small campus mean that you get to know the
students (and they you) very well. It also meant limited resources,
limited job opportunities, and limited programs. Problems like
childcare, transportation, domestic violence, alcohol and drug abuse,
poor academic preparation, unemployment, underemployment and seasonal
employment presented hurdles for students and those who advise them.
Some students demonstrated amazing creativity, flexibility and
persistence in dealing with these issues; some were unable to overcome
them and became part of the negative side of retention statistics. Their
stories are beyond the scope of this column. At issue here is the role
of an advisor in these circumstances.
Just as each student is unique, so every advisor brings a
particular mix of experience, skills and education to the table. My
style is to let the student set the agenda. As I listen to their
concerns (after all they dropped in or made an appointment for some
reason!), I ask the appropriate question(s) to help determine their
interests and goals, try to help them explore whatever options exist,
and encourage them to take the next step to pursue their chosen path.
During this discussion, I also try to ensure that they are clear on
degree requirements, course selection and other “nuts and bolts” issues.
But the decisions are the students’ responsibility. It’s their
This routine could be the same at a large university. What makes
advising at a rural, isolated community college different is that the
advisor does it all. You are the guide, the coach and the cheerleader.
You do the placement testing because there is no testing center; you
interpret the Strong Interest Inventory and MBTI because there is no
career services specialist; you do the orientation program because there
is no separate department for that. The whole student services process
from recruiting to graduation is in your hands. The job requires good
listening and problem-solving skills, organization and communication,
and the exercise of good judgment when faced with counseling situations
that are beyond your training and expertise. Most importantly, it
requires genuine care for students. The advisor is really on the front
lines, but the rewards are great. When you see a student achieve his or
her goal—which may or may not include graduation—the experience is
It was just starting to snow when we left Page. In fact,
the first major winter storm of 2002 followed the exact route across the
Midwest I had planned for our move Michigan. Even though my new
position there would be at a larger college with a different mix of
responsibilities, I knew what I had experienced in Page would help me
continue to serve students in any small town environment.
Kevin M. Anderson
(Formerly of Coconino Community College, Page, AZ)
Bay De Noc Community College, Escanaba, MI
Who are you Seeking to Retain and Why?
Brian Stanley, Multicultural Concerns Commission Chair
It is well known that retention
of every student is simply not possible. As academic advisors we
understand that, for some students, transferring or stopping-out is a
legitimate strategy for attaining long term personal or professional
success. Yet, on many campuses, talk of retention focuses on retaining
“all” students. As a result, some colleges have developed overly-broad
retention strategies that disjoint campus units and ignore the role of
identity in the retention of at-risk ethnic and cultural minorities. A
more effective alternative is the development of a focused retention
framework that utilizes assessment to identify those most at risk for
early institutional departure and then seeks to develop culturally
relevant programmatic interventions for their success.
Before I continue, I need to stress the importance of assessment in
any well structured retention program. Quantitative and qualitative
assessments of student needs and outcomes are key in the identification
of those most at-risk, tracking changes in at-risk populations, and
providing important benchmarking information for evaluating the
strengths and potential growth areas for any retention program. If your
retention program does not do assessment then your institution probably
is not doing retention as well as it could be.
Swail, Redd, and Perna (2003) suggest that student
retention is the result of an interaction between cognitive, social, and
institutional factors that impact students positively or negatively.
Successful students are able to attain equilibrium between these
Cognitive factors are the intelligence, knowledge, and academic
abilities students bring to the collegiate environment (p. 78).
Cognitive factors are central to students’ abilities to comprehend and
complete the academic portion of the college curriculum, understand
their experiences, and develop and utilize effective decision-making and
problem solving capacities. Social factors encompass the broad array of
issues that allow or inhibit student integration into the social fabric
of the institution and include related issues such as cultural fit,
peer group influence, career goals, educational legacy, and coping
skills. Institutional factors include the institution’s ability to
provide students with academic and social support throughout the
collegiate experience. Institutional factors are equivocated with
cognitive and social factors due to the importance of institutional
support in student decisions to persist through degree attainment. The
institution’s ability to leverage the cognitive and social services
needed to support students through their college experience is critical
in helping students compensate for cognitive or social weaknesses
(p.79). Within this model, it is important to note that students with
serious deficiencies in both cognitive and social skills are the most
at-risk and will need the most institutional support to persist to
degree completion (Swail et. al., 2003, p. 81).
What does successful institutional support look like for at-risk
cultural and ethnic minorities? Tierney (2000) posits that the
“negotiation of identity in academe as central to educational
success”(p. 219). The challenge is not for students to fit into an alien
culture at the expense of their own; rather, it is to challenge the
organizational culture to adapt to students’ cultures by developing
“…ways in which an individual’s identity is affirmed, honored, and
incorporated into the organization’s culture” (p. 219). To accomplish
this, Tierney (2000) proposes that retention and achievement programs
should (1) develop innovative programs and activities that seek to
affirm and validate individual student cultural identities
(Collaborative Relations of Power); (2) develop contextualized social
and academic activities which create connections between home,
community, and schooling (Home, Community, and Schooling Connections);
(3) Be locally grounded in student experience and reality, thus
providing students with an opportunity to integrate their local lives
into the fabric of the institution while challenging them to use their
university education to make positive change in their home and local
environments (Local Definitions of Identity); (4) foster a spirit of
academic excellence within target populations by maintaining high
academic expectations of student performance (challenge over
remediation); (5) have strong, validating, holistic support structures
which, instead of narrowly focusing on any real or perceived skill gap,
emphasize the development and utilization of academic support structures
(formal and informal) which view students, especially at-risk students,
as individuals with the capacity for academic success (p. 218 - 224).
The research completed by Tierney (2000) and Swail, Redd, and Perna,
(2003) provide important insight into effective retention. First,
effective retention is collaborative insofar as it requires a strategic
alignment of institutional resources for the purposes of retention
success of those most at-risk of early departure. Second, effective
retention is conscious of the impact of race, class, and culture in the
life of the at-risk student and actively seeks positive ways to validate
and integrate culture into institutional support. Finally, effective
retention is assessment driven and evaluates programmatic activities for
alignment with assessed student needs.
Saint Mary's College of California
Swail, S. W., Redd, E. K., & Perna, W. L. (Eds.).
(2003). Retaining minority students in higher education (ASHE-ERIC
Higher Education Report). San Francisco: Wiley Publishers.
Tierney, W. G. (2000). Power, identity, and the dilemma of college student departure. In J. M. Braxton (Ed.), Reworking the Student Departure Puzzle (pp. 213 - 234). Nashville, TN: Vanderbilt University Press.
Advising Transfer Students
Tom Grites, Co-Editor, Advising Transfer Students: Issues and Strategies NACADA Monograph
Students who transfer from one
institution to another constitute a significant portion of the current
college population, and they consume a considerable amount of the time
and effort of advisors at both two-year and four-year institutions.
While transfer students bring some higher education experience with
them, they are new to the (receiving) transfer institution. They are, in
a sense, an anomaly in that they are first-year students with some
experience in higher education. This article serves as an overview and
provides a brief description of the forthcoming NACADA monograph about
this important student population.
In reviewing the literature there seems to be an overgeneralization
about transfer students. Two specific observations become apparent.
First, the data reported regarding transfer students sometime appear to
be inconsistent or in conflict. The data sources, the timing of the data
collection, and the varying definitions of “transfer students” all
contribute to these inconsistencies. Therefore, it is essential that
institutions clearly and accurately define their transfer populations
when attempting to develop or modify their programs and services for
Second, it is clear that most articles and studies found
in the literature (in fact, most of the literature itself) about
transfer students are limited to the community college transfer student
and process. However, “transfer students” include not only those who
transfer from two-year to four-year institutions, but also those who
transfer from four-year to four-year institutions, and reverse transfers
(four-year to two-year). Therefore, it is essential that institutions
examine their policies and programs to insure that they reflect equity
and comparability for the full complement and variety of their transfer
students, especially if these efforts are to be based upon what is
reported in the literature.
The various authors of the chapters in the monograph have identified
several broad considerations that need to be addressed on many campuses
in order to enhance the success of transfer students. These are
summarized as follows:
- Recognize that “transfer shock” really exists.
All transfer students enter a new and different institutional
environment, which has different policies, different procedures,
different advising structures, different terminology, different faculty
and academic expectations, etc. Improving application materials and
resources, strengthening Orientation programs, and expanding campus
programs for transfers will all serve to overcome this “transfer shock”
- Strengthen articulation agreements.
The real value of articulation agreements has somewhat eroded as a
result of recent trends toward legislated Statewide mandates, common
course numbering systems, and other seemingly well-intended guarantees
for transfer students. However, most of these trends have diminished
value if they are not articulated within specific degree programs, that
is, the student’s major academic program of study. Without this context,
some agreements have served as no more than public relations and
recruitment functions. Program-to program articulations better serve the
transfer student and both institutions.
- Use technology wisely.
On-line admissions applications, course equivalency determinations,
electronic transcript submission and retrieval, and advance registration
capabilities have improved the transfer process quite readily.
Institutions should maximize the opportunities and capabilities of these
technological improvements in order to serve transfer students more
effectively, more efficiently, and more successfully.
Finally, the monograph editors observed a variety of recommendations
that are provided throughout the document. They have attempted to
synthesize these recommendations into a “common” set. These are:
- Enhanced communication must occur.
Both two-year and four year-institutions need to improve upon this
critical aspect in the transfer process. ; clearly publicized
articulation agreements, course-to-course equivalencies, enhanced
Websites and other technological media, and on-site campus visits at
other institutions are just some of the ways that this recommendation
can be realized.
- “Transfer Centers” should be established.
The communication links suggested above can only be positively
facilitated if a specific unit, office, or individual person is
identified as the primary contact for transfer students. The concept of
“one-stop shopping” has already been implemented for various student
service areas on many campuses; the Transfer Center should simply become
an extension of this concept. Where a smaller population of transfer
students exists, an individual or specific office should be designated
as the primary resource for transfer students.
- Orientation Programs must be improved and/or Transfer Courses should be developed.
The seamless transition will not occur only on paper; students must be
prepared for their planned transfer to a specific school (orientation
out of the community college, for example), and the receiving transfer
institution must provide a full and complete orientation to the new
environment for all transfer students. The course format, similar to
many First-Year Seminars, offers a more systematic and sustained way to
acculturate all transfer students into their new environment.
- Similar opportunities should be afforded transfer students as are native students. Access
to Honors Programs and curricula, scholarships, restricted
upper-division majors, early entry to graduate and professional schools,
and even individual course selection opportunities should be afforded
the transfer students who meet or exceed the same criteria as native
A full description of these, as well as other recommendations,
examples, and resources, are provided in the monograph. The authors, the
editors, and the NACADA leaders look forward to this new monograph and
trust that you will find it useful as well, as you monitor, review, and
revise your services for transfer students. Find out more about
resources for advising transfer students in the NACADA Clearinghouse.
Richard Stockton College of New Jersey
Member Career Services Committee
Dear Career Corner:
I am looking forward to
attending the NACADA National Conference in Cincinnati this Fall.
Although I am not looking for a new position right now, I plan to
consider new job opportunities within the next five years. What services
does the Member Career Services Committee offer at the National
Conference and how can I make the most of my time in Cincinnati?
– Signed, Cincinnati-bound Advisor
Dear Cincinnati-bound Advisor:
All of us on the Member Career Services Committee are looking forward
to attending the 2004 NACADA National Conference in Cincinnati, OH
October 6-9, 2004. We will have a table near the registration area that
will be hosted by Member Career Services Committee representatives. At
that table you will find information on current advising-related
positions that are available as well as helpful handouts on how to
successfully advance your career. Our representatives will also be
available to give you constructive feedback on how to improve your cover
letters and/or resumes/CVs, so remember to bring them with you to the
conference. Be on the lookout for us and stop by to say hi and find out
more about the services we have to offer you.
As far as making the most of the National Conference, one
of the most important things you can do in Cincinnati is expand your
professional network. The American Heritage Dictionary (1997) defines a
network as, “An extended group of people with similar interests or
concerns who interact and remain in informal contact for mutual
assistance or support.” Remember that you have a lot to offer the rest
of us, so be bold and strike up a conversation with someone as you are
waiting for the next presentation to begin. NACADA members are some of
the most friendly people I have ever met, so introduce yourself and ask
questions of the people you meet. Here are some suggestions of things
you can ask people to get the conversation started:
- How long have you been a member of NACADA?
- Where do your work?
- What population of students do you work with?
- What is the best part of your current job?
- What is the biggest challenge that you and/or your institution face?
Make sure that you bring plenty of business cards and ask
for a card from each person that you meet. Then when you get back home,
take the time to send a quick e-mail to let the person know how much
you enjoyed meeting them at the conference. Add his/her contact
information to Outlook or to whatever software you use to track your
contacts. See you in Cincinnati!
Do you have a career related question? If so, submit your questions on-line at http://www.nacada.ksu.edu/AdministrativeDivision/career.htm. Questions will be answered anonymously.
Jennifer L. Bloom, Chair
NACADA Member Career Services Committee