Three Ways Advising Has Evolved
Across the nation, institutions are working to get to know their students better - to learn in detail what students’ daily lives are like. Are they hungry or housing insecure? Are they the first-generation students? What are their academic, career and financial goals? As institutions work toward their completion agendas, they are moving away from understanding academic advising solely as an academic transaction. At the same time, the field of faculty and primary-role advisors continue to push for comprehensive wraparound services that frame and respond to student needs holistically. This shift requires institution-wide reflection on the current student experience from recruitment through graduation, change and leadership management and the strategic use of technology. Academic advising is one of the most impactful levers in this landscape, where 6-year graduation rates for full-time students hover at 55% (Tyton, 2015). NASPA is developing and managing a network of leading organizations to help institutions redesign their academic advising practices to ensure equitable outcomes for all students.
In this guest post, two experts from NACADA – The Global Community for Academic Advising and Achieving the Dream have provided insight on the beneficial ways the academic advising field has evolved over time and the most prevalent challenges. Dr. Jennifer Joslin is the Associate Director for Content Development at NACADA, and Dr. Mei-Yen Ireland is the Executive Director of Holistic Student Supports at Achieving the Dream. In what follows, they describe three continuing shifts in the field and the persistent challenges institutions face when engaging in advising redesign.
Voter Education and the Importance of Civil Dialogue
With the 2018 midterm elections freshly behind us, I imagine all civic educators in the nation are wondering the same thing. Did we do enough for our students? Did we appropriately prepare them to make critical decisions regarding their political leadership, so that they could complete their civic duties in good faith to not only their nation, but to themselves? In observing the refreshing up kick in youth voter turnout in the state of Texas, I am beyond overjoyed to see that students in the Lone Star State are answering the call of engagement and exercising their civic voices, but a part of me remains cautious. With this wealth of new voters arriving to the political scene for the first time in their lives, what can we do as educators to assure that they make wise and informed choices that benefit their individual civic values and unique needs? What can we do to confidently say post-election that we did the absolute best in preparing our students for authentic and personal advocacy of values that reflect independent thought?
Reflections on Civic Action and Service-Learning and the New Age College Student
The capacity and commitment both to participate constructively with diverse others and to work collectively to address common problems; the practice of working in a pluralistic society and world to improve the quality of people’s lives and the sustainability of the planet; the ability to analyze systems in order to plan and engage in public action; the moral and political courage to take risks to achieve a greater public good.
Helping our students understand they have the power, and the responsibility to impact our community.
Helping our students understand that it is their responsibility to pay attention to the community they are in, and that making a positive impact is at the heart of the intent of all of the programming that our office coordinates. We strive to help our students understand the impact of their time and energy so they understand the value of volunteering. That one minute interaction with that student last December helped fill me with hope that we are being successful in this endeavor.
Teaching Students to Vote? Challenging Assumptions Through Intentional Practice
As colleges and universities across the United States seek to improve the educational opportunities for students that foster a long-term campus climate for positive political learning, we see emergent innovations and promising practices. By developing informed voters by teaching voting basics, information literacy, history and the current state of voting rights, we believe that educators can build a system that benefits our democracy.
CLDE and Gen Z: Generational Considerations and Implications
How do we make Civic Learning and Democratic Engagement (CLDE) an integral part of the student experience? How do we help students see themselves as voters not just students who vote- normalization without minimization? We often expect students to enroll in our institutions with a civic mindset and have a decent understanding of what drives them towards civic engagement. However, just as we spend weeks and courses helping students develop study skills, time management, and how to navigate college, we cannot miss the opportunity to educate on social responsibility and CLDE.