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Advising 101 and Advisor FAQs

Advising 101

WHO: Full-time, salaried faculty and professional or approved staff members are eligible to serve as advisors for student organizations, so long as they are not on leave during their term. Student teaching assistants, graduate assistants, some adjunct professors, and non-professional staff may not be eligible to serve as the primary advisors for a student organization.

WHAT: Depending on the needs of a student organization advisors typically serve multiple roles, including the role of supervisor, follower, mentor, facilitator and educator.

HOW:

You can…

  • Ask a student organization that you are interested in advising if they would like to be advised by you
  • Accept an invitation to serve as an advisor when approached by a student organization
  • Be matched with a student organization in need by providing your contact information and interests to Student Activities and Involvement
  • Have a position that requires you to serve as an advisor

EXPECTATIONS:

  • Maintain institutional and organizational knowledge
  • Maintain regular contact with the student organization to:
    • Ensure the maintenance and growth of the organization
    • Educate students on policies, best practices, and campus resources
    • Encourage community building and networking in and outside the organization.
  • Report behaviors that impact the community
  • Additional expectations can be set by you and your student organization

BENEFITS:

  • Continued professional education and training provided to advisors for enhancing skills and institutional knowledge
  • Opportunity to share knowledge, experiences, and skills with students are working towards a common goal
  • The relationships and community developed outside the office and classroom
  • Satisfaction obtained by the impact and recognition of efforts

Frequently Asked Questions

How long can I serve as a student organization advisor?

  • An advisor’s term is outlined in each registered student organization’s constitution. You may serve as many consecutive terms as the organization allows, so long as you meet the advisor eligibility requirements.

Is there training and support for student organization advisors?

  • Yes. Orientation for advisors typically occurs at the beginning of each fall and spring semester. Registration for one of these sessions is typically available through the monthly newsletters sent to listed student organization advisors each month.

What is my liability for serving as a student organization’s advisor?

  • In general, student organization advisors are not liable for the behavior of a student organization unless the advisor had prior knowledge of the group’s risky behavior(s) and failed to report it, and/or either condoned/participated in such activity(s). If you have questions or concerns related to a student organization’s activities, please contact Student Activities and Involvement immediately.

I’m classified as “Campus Security Authority” (CSA) and “Responsible Employee”. What does this mean in terms of my student organization?

  • As a student organization advisor you are designated as an individual with significant responsibilities for students and campus activities. You are responsible for reporting sexual harassment and sexual violence (per Title IX), as well as, criminal offenses and violence (per Clery Act) that is made known to you to the appropriate campus administrators in a timely manner. More information about this responsibility can be found on pages 10-13 of the Student Organization Advisor Resource Guidebook.

How many organizations can I advise at one time?

  • There is no limit to the amount of student groups you can advise. However we encourage that you limit the number of student organizations you advise to under 3 to ensure that you can provide appropriate attention to each group.

What is the time commitment for serving as an advisor?

  • Based on the expectations, activities, and needs of the student group, your time commitment will vary from student group to student group. It’s helpful to identify your responsibilities and availability to compare them to the activities and needs of the student group(s) you advise to determine how much time they’ll require.
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