Mandatory advising gains momentum

View this email in your browser
Higher Education
A newsletter from The Hechinger Report
 Share Share
 Tweet Tweet
 Forward Forward

Delece Smith-Barrow

By Olivia Sanchez
Partly because the pandemic created so many obstacles for students, more colleges are taking time to re-evaluate the needs of their student body and then taking more deliberate steps to meet those needs — and for Charlie Nutt, the executive director of the National Academic Advising Association, it’s about time.
At San Antonio College in Texas, for example, all students are required to meet with an advisor at four points during the pursuit of an associate degree; a case management approach supports students both in and outside the classroom; and a new program bolsters advising and support for those who have earned fewer than 15 credits.
Robert Vela, the president of San Antonio College, said it’s a departure from the longstanding belief that because college students are adults, they should be able to independently decide whether to seek guidance and support.
“We took a parent approach that we know best for our students. And because we know best, we need to take the word ‘optional’ out,” Vela said. For its efforts, San Antonio College this week won the 2021 Aspen Prize for Community College Excellence, a premier award given by the Aspen Institute.
Students are required to meet with an advisor after they enroll and after they complete 15, 30 and 45 credit hours on their way to a 60-hour associate degree. If they don’t, they’re barred from registering for classes.
Many colleges around the country use similar models, including the University of Utah, the University of Alaska Fairbanks and Lorain County Community College in Elyria, Ohio.
Nutt, who has been in the field of advising since 1991, said that for too long advising was considered just a way to help students register for classes. Advising is now more commonly viewed as a way for students to learn other aspects of navigating college, beyond getting their schedules straight.
Brett McFarlane, a longtime college advising coordinator who now works for an ed-tech company, said the idea of mandated advising first started bubbling up about a decade ago.
“A lot of times in advising it was, you know, ‘go see your advisor,’ but no one was really clear about why you were to see your advisor,” said McFarlane. “And advisors would say, ‘well you came to see me, what do you need?’ It’s lacked intentionality for a long time.”
Even before the pandemic, San Antonio College was moving to a case management model for advising, which requires that advisors help students with not just academic but also personal and societal barriers they face, by connecting them to resources that can help them stay in school. Over the last 14 months, though, Vela said advising appointments have become much more like social work.
Where advising used to be heavily focused on the student’s academic path and career aspirations, it’s now about helping students juggle other aspects of life. Vela said lack of technology, food and housing insecurity, mental health issues, caring for family members or trying to figure out how to have several people working or schooling from home with only one or two computers are some of the barriers his students have had to navigate during the pandemic.
Sara Passement, a certified advisor at San Antonio College, said that since she began seeing students virtually last year, she’s seen students sign up for appointments more frequently than required and stay longer than normal.
“Most of our students are from marginalized communities,” said Fidel Bém, director of advising at San Antonio College, where most students are Hispanic, Black or Native American.  Often, he said, students don’t know what they should be getting out of the college experience or how to find the resources they need.
“If you need — and you do need — to talk about what's going to happen after you finish college, you need to be in the Student Enrichment Center,” Bém said. “If you need — and you do need — to get supplemental instruction, you should get to learn who the staff are in our tutoring center.”
At the University of Alaska Fairbanks, Ginny Kinne, director of advising, said students are required to see an advisor before registering for classes every semester throughout their entire college career.
At both the University of Utah and Lorain County Community College in Ohio, students are only required to meet with an advisor during their first two years — but they are barred from registering for classes if they fail to do so.
College students have historically been expected to recognize when they need counseling and go get it. But recently, advisors and experts are known to repeat the same refrain: “Students don't do optional.”
Send story ideas and news tips to Tweet at @oliviarsanchez. Read high-quality news about innovation and inequality in education at The Hechinger Report.
Was this newsletter forwarded to you?
Click here to subscribe!
Related Hechinger reads 
Is the Hechinger Report part of your routine? Support it with a monthly gift.
Give today to make this message go away.
Copyright © 2021 The Hechinger Report, All rights reserved.
You are receiving this email because you signed up at our website The Hechinger Report.

Our mailing address is:
The Hechinger Report
475 Riverside Drive
Suite 650
New York, NY 10115

Add us to your address book

Want to change how you receive these emails?
You can update your preferences or unsubscribe from this list.

Older messages

Future of Learning: A support system for principals

Wednesday, May 19, 2021

Free expert coaches helped school leaders figure out every-day logistics in a pandemic, and think about the future of schooling, too This is a weekly newsletter. Sign up for a free subscription, and

Unique joy and new perils

Tuesday, May 18, 2021

As a district re-opens, one middle schooler returned to school and another remained home. This is a weekly newsletter. Sign up for a free subscription, and invite a friend to subscribe. 📬 View this

Proof Points: Why reading comprehension is deteriorating

Monday, May 17, 2021

Scholars weigh decline in reading habits and other theories This is a weekly newsletter. Sign up for a free subscription, and invite a friend to subscribe. View this email in your browser A newsletter

Early Childhood: Play has the potential to reduce inequality

Friday, May 14, 2021

Twenty-six studies point to more play for young children This is a weekly newsletter. Sign up for a free subscription, and invite a friend to subscribe. View this email in your browser A newsletter

Fresh insight

Tuesday, May 11, 2021

The pandemic exposed inequality in education from theearliest days This is a weekly newsletter. Sign up for a free subscription, and invite a friend to subscribe. 📬 View this email in your browser

3-2-1: The measure of success, courage, and knowing what you want

Thursday, September 16, 2021

3 ideas, 2 quotes, and 1 question to consider this week. ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌

It all started with a Zoom call...

Thursday, September 16, 2021

Now, 50 episodes later, we're here to celebrate. Recently, one of our expert L&D guests for CLO Connect said something that really struck a nerve with me. “We don't need to keep anything a

Letters for Creatives #52: Feel lighter

Thursday, September 16, 2021

Let go of the weight that is weighing you down ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌

21 Ways to Cashflow No One Talks About 🤐

Thursday, September 16, 2021

​view in browser​ ​ ​ If you have $0 to $10k to $1million, here's a tiered list to get cashflowing. Want more ways to make money? Our premium crew, Contrarian Cashflow, is the place for you! Price

The Regret Minimization Framework

Thursday, September 16, 2021

Hi friend, In last week's newsletter, we saw the book Invent and Wander which was a collection of Jeff Bezos's letters to Amazon shareholders over the years. In the preface, Bezos describes

October's NAB Show cancelled

Thursday, September 16, 2021

Show cancels with just a few weeks to go. Nielsen release Podcasting Today report with useful data. Samsung Free expands 4.4 minutes to read · Your daily briefing for podcasting and on-demand, with

Don't mistake planning for strategy with creating a budget

Thursday, September 16, 2021

Here are the guidelines for an actual strategy ‌ ‌ ‌ I have 6 updates for you this week. 1. On my mind “A lot of companies mistake planning for strategy. Here's how making a strategic plan

Survival stories on a dark day in history

Wednesday, September 15, 2021

A new documentary honors the stories and memories of 9/11 survivors ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌

Welcome to Mighty Knowledge!

Wednesday, September 15, 2021

For those who love to learn Mighty Knowledge ​ Dear friend, You are now subscribed to Mighty Knowledge! I'm George, the writer of this newsletter and a philomath at heart. I started Mighty

The Faerie's Goggles

Wednesday, September 15, 2021

Flash fiction featuring three faeries who are in a whole lot of trouble ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌