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CEAT academic advisors present at NACADA Annual Conference

Tuesday, November 8, 2022

Five College of Engineering, Architecture and Technology (CEAT) academic Advisors were invited to present at the NACADA (the Global Community for Academic Advising) Annual Conference in Portland, Oregon earlier this month.  


NACADA is an association of professional advisors, counselors, faculty, administrators and students working to enhance the educational development of students. 


NACADA evolved from the first National Conference on Academic Advising in 1977 and has over 12,000 members representing all 50 United States, Puerto Rico, Canada and several other international countries.  NACADA provides its members with exemplary and innovative opportunities for professional development and personal growth.


CEAT advisors who presented at the conference are Sarah Ayres, Mary Francis, Rachel Todhunter, Kendal Treece and Kristal Junkens, along with Tom Joyce from the College of Education and Human Sciences.


Additionally, several of them are active in NACADA leadership roles.  Junkens serves NACADA Region 7 Chair, Francis serves as Awards Chair for Region 7, and Ayres serves as Region 7 2023 Conference Co-Chair.


Following are the titles and abstracts they presented:


Mary Francis and Sarah Ayres
Transforming Success:  Creating Positive First Experiences through Orientation
Orientation activities can define a student's long-term impression of the institution and the advising office. Come learn how we transformed our orientation and enrollment experience for new incoming freshmen. Small adjustments at the advisor level and college-wide changes helped take us from a program that was overwhelming and stressful to a positive experience directed toward student development and relationship building. Working within the larger university New Student Orientation framework, a complete overhaul of our college procedures helped us create a new approach that focused on what was timely, important, and necessary to our incoming students. This session will discuss how we once conducted orientation, outline the various changes we made and the guiding principles we used to make those changes, and explore observed outcomes.


Kendall Treece, Rachel Todhunter and Mary Francis
The Unstoppable Force vs. The Immovable Object:  Gen Z’s Expectations of the College Experience Verses Higher Education’s Established System of Schooling
What happens when an unstoppable force meets an immovable object? Conflict. Generation Z is known as the generation of change, questions, and advocacy. Higher Education is structured and encourages its students to adapt to the established process. Advisors have the responsibility of fulfilling the institution's agenda while supporting students with their problems, ideas, and goals. Advisors have found themselves in a tug-of-war between these strong-minded entities to facilitate a working relationship. How can we help these diametrically opposed viewpoints come together to meet their shared goal of graduating career-ready members of society? We invite you to join us as we discuss ways to encourage development with both parties and tools advisors can use to meet the needs of our Gen Z students and our Institutions.


Sarah Ayres
Training, Evaluation and Assessment:  Building One Tool to Rule Them All!
Without an effective tool to assess advisement in our college, we embarked on a journey to build one. Along the way we identified the knowledge, skills, and abilities critical to advisement tasks in our college. From this information, we were able to build a tool that will allow us to assess advisement from a student perspective, and use the same framework for an advisor annual performance evaluation that identifies intersections with the NACADA Core Competencies. Furthermore, we used these building blocks to create both a new advisor training program and ongoing training for all advisors on a 12 month rotation. Come learn how we engaged in this process, what we learned, and our plan for moving forward!


Kristal Soderstrom Junkens and Tom Joyce
Working With and Advising Military Service Members and Veterans
Military Service Members and Veterans bring a wealth of resources with them when they enroll or work in an Institute of Higher Learning. Many come from diverse backgrounds, and have multi-cultural and real-world knowledge and experiences that can enhance classroom discussions for a wide variety of course content. They also may potentially have vast experience in problem solving and operational planning. Unfortunately, there may also be some obstacles which can inhibit their ability to fulfill their highest potential in the civilian world. This discussion will cover the following topics: Veteran and Military terms and meanings; the reasoning behind why many of these people serve or served in the US Military; what Veterans, Military Service Members, and Military Affiliated people bring to their respective campuses; obstacles people within this community face, including stereotypes and misconceptions; and how Advisors and others are able to support members of this community.


Left to right:  Kendall Treece, Rachel Todhunter and Mary Francis

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