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Academic Advising News

Academic Advising News is published as a service of the Academic Advising Portal, an academic advising and information website maintained by Penn State's Division of Undergraduate Studies.

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Academic Advising News: July 2015

July 1, 2015

The most recent issue of The Journal of General Education: A Curricular Commons of the Humanities and Science contains seven articles highlighting the relationships between General Education and academic advising. Guest editor Eric R. White, Ed.D., contributed “The Foundational Role of Academic Advising in General Education” as the introduction to this issue. The Journal of General Education is published by the Penn State University Press and is the professional forum for discussing issues in general education today. 

To help students more effectively use MajorQuest, the program's Interest Key link now leads to an expanded description of each interest area. The descriptions now include examples of past learning and experiences that can affirm a student's interests and better relate them to areaa of study.

The LionPATH training team has been developing materials needed to train the Penn State community on the new student system LionPATH. The training will be offered in self-paced learning, as well as face-to-face and web-based training. This blended approach will allow end-users to learn in a manner that best suits their schedules and learning styles.

Penn State Reads invites first-year students to participate in an essay contest to further engage with the themes of the 2015 Penn State Reads selection, "The Boom," by Russell Gold. Responses to one of the prompts will be judged based on connection to the Penn State values, a demonstrated ability to think critically about the prompt, responsiveness to the prompt, literary style, and grammar. The top two submissions will be displayed on the Penn State Reads website. Winners will receive a prize of a $100 Amazon gift card, as well as the opportunity to meet Gold when he is on campus October 12-14, 2015.

Academic Advising News: June 2015

June 1, 2015

On Friday, Sept. 11, the fourteenth annual professional development conference on academic advising will take place at The Penn Stater Conference Center Hotel, State College. This year's theme is "Looking to the Future: The Importance of the Academic Adviser in Higher Education."

The program will feature a keynote address by guest speaker Marc Lowenstein, Ph.D., who suggests thinking about the future may begin by predicting, with a focus on how forces outside advising will affect our work and on possible changes in the tools we will use.

The Division of Undergraduate Studies launched a new website recently to help students learn to explore majors and minors, connect goals and interests to areas of study, and better understand the value and purpose of a college education.

At http://dus.psu.edu, undergraduate students can take advantage of tools, resources, and advising assistance to find majors that fit them well and make informed decisions about other academic opportunities, such as minors, certificates, and concurrent majors. The site additionally highlights ways for students to fully engage in a total college experience that can include research, study abroad, internships, leadership roles, and service-learning programs.

Volunteer readers from the Penn State community are invited to take part in choosing the 2016–17 Penn State Reads common text. The Penn State Reads steering committee collected book nominations earlier this year and narrowed the submissions to a short list of eight books, including:

— “The Good Food Revolution,” by Will Allen
— “Quiet: The Power of Introverts in a World That Can't Stop Talking,” by Susan Cain
— “The Circle,” by Dave Eggers
— “The Invisible Man,” by Ralph Ellison
— “Far From the Tree,” by Andrew Solomon
— “Paul Robeson: A Life of Activism and Art,” by Lindsey Swindall
— “Warmth of Other Suns,” by Isabel Wilkerson
— “Covering,” by Kenji Yoshino

Academic Advising News: May 2015

May 1, 2015

On Wednesday, May 13, 1:00–5:00 p.m., in 010 Sparks Building, University Park, the advising community is invited to view a demonstration of Starfish Retention Solutions, a comprehensive software system that the LionPATH advising team is considering as a robust University-wide advising toolkit. On May 4, ProjectLionPATH@psu.edu will send an email reminder to members of the advising community with details and a request to RSVP for either a seat in 010 Sparks or participation via Adobe Connect.

Proposals are now being accepted for presentations, workshops and posters for Penn State’s 14th annual Professional Development Conference on Academic Advising, scheduled to take place from 8:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. Sept. 11, at the Penn Stater Conference Center Hotel, University Park. Proposals are due not later than May 15, and the submission form is available at http://www.dus.psu.edu/advisers/conf_proposals.html

UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. — Margaret A. Sebastianelli, senior undergraduate studies programs coordinator and director of student services in the College of Health and Human Development, and Beth Seymour, pre-major adviser and education abroad coordinator at Penn State Altoona, have been selected as the recipients for the 2015 Penn State Excellence in Advising Award.

Students interested in learning Arabic may be eligible for federally funded scholarships available through the STARTTALK Arabic AcademyJune 11–July 8, at University Park. Additional scholarships and opportunities to learn other less commonly taught languages, such as Chinese, Korean, Turkish (listed under LANG in the Schedule of Courses), and Russian will be offered this summer through the Language Institute at Penn State. Please contact the institute director, Elena Galinova (galinova@psu.edu), with any further inquiries.

Academic Advising News: April 2015

April 1, 2015

Proposals are now being accepted for presentations, workshops and posters for Penn State’s 14th annual Professional Development Conference on Academic Advising, scheduled to take place from 8:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. Sept. 11, at the Penn Stater Conference Center Hotel, University Park. Proposals are due not later than May 15, and the submission form is available at http://www.dus.psu.edu/advisers/conf_proposals.html

Penn State certificates can supplement or enhance existing degree programs, making them an effective option for students seeking credentials in specific areas. Though information about certificates appears in the Undergraduate Degree Programs Bulletin, a new categorized list by interest area is now available in the Undergraduate Advising Handbook.

On Tuesday, May 12, 9:00 a.m.–2:00 p.m., in the HUB-Robeson Center, University Park, Penn State’s Commission for Adult Learners invites the University community to attend this year's Hendrick Best Practices for Adult Learners Conference, an annual one-day event showcasing best practices in support of adult learners. Registration is open until April 24, and the fee of $80.00 includes conference materials, light morning refreshments and lunch. 

Academic Advising News: March 2015

March 1, 2015

Since its inception in March 2013, the General Education Task Force has continued to facilitate an open and interactive forum on proposed Gen Ed curricular revisions, recently narrowing its work to a single proposed structure. All members of the Penn State community are encouraged to consider the latest proposal, discuss its implications and opportunities, and add more voices to the conversation about this critical component of undergraduate education. 

On Monday, Mar. 2, noon to 1:00 p.m., in 110 Henderson Building, University Park, interested faculty and staff members are invited to attend a presentation on LionPATH and its future impact on academic advising. Hear the latest on the implementation timeline and learn about advising resources that are planned.

On Thursday, Mar. 19, noon to 1:00 p.m., in 114 McAllister Building, University Park, you can join the discussion about recent data related to ALEKS, including math course late drops, EPRs, and final grades. Hear from those looking at the numbers and working on future plans and share the impact that ALEKS has had on your work. This session will also be available via Adobe Connect at https://meeting.psu.edu/aleks.

 

Academic Advising News: February 2015

February 1, 2015

The Academic Administrative Policies and Procedures Manual (AAPPM) provides guidance on the implementation of Senate and University policies and procedures related to undergraduate education at Penn State. Recently redesigned, the AAPPM is now searchable by topic or procedure code and is accessible by mobile devices. 

On Friday, Feb. 6, noon to 1:00 p.m., in 110 Henderson Building, University Park, members of the advising community are invited to a presentation and discussion about the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act. Robert Kubat, University registrar, and David Dulabon, associate general counsel in the Office of General Counsel, will share their knowledge, provide resources, and discuss advising best practices.

On Monday, Mar. 2, noon to 1:00 p.m., in 110 Henderson Building, University Park, interested faculty and staff members are invited to attend a presentation on LionPATH and its future impact on academic advising. Hear the latest on the implementation timeline and learn about advising resources that are planned.

Academic Advising News: January 2015

January 1, 2015

Every semester the Division of Undergraduate Studies invites the Penn State community to lunchtime presentations featuring academic advising topics. These lunch-and-learn sessions provide opportunities for professional development, networking and advising discussions. No registration is necessary, and all faculty and staff members are welcome to attend and bring a lunch. 

A phased roll-out of the new Project LionPATH student information system is expected to begin this fall and be completed in late 2016. Visit the project’s website to stay informed about LionPATH’s progress, implementation plans and implications for Penn State’s academic advising community. Feel free to also subscribe to periodic Updates for Advisers.

Academic Advising News: December 2014

December 1, 2014

Any faculty, staff, student, or community member may nominate a Penn State undergraduate student from any campus for the Stand Up Award. This award honors students demonstrating courage, fortitude, and ethical leadership by taking a stand for a person, cause, or belief. Successful nominees will be honored at a ceremony in April 2015 when they will be presented with a $1,000 award.

In response to accessibility requirements and new design technology, the University Faculty Senate recently unveiled a contemporary website with a user-friendly interface. The site provides information on Senate committees, including agendas, minutes, and reports; student academic policies; curricular procedures; and course/program changes across the University system.

Academic Advising News: November 2014

November 2, 2014

UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. -- Division of Undergraduate Studies academic advisers Elena Galinova and Irma Giannetti recently authored a book titled “Advising International Chinese Students: Issues, Strategies and Practices” to educate the advising community about this special population and to contribute to discussions about related advising strategies and institutional reforms.

Nominations for the 2015 Shirley Hendrick Award, which is administered by the Commission for Adult Learners and recognizes a senior Penn State administrator who has significantly advanced efforts for adult learners at Penn State, will be accepted through Nov. 7. Nominations are open to administrators University-wide, including, but not limited to deans, associate and assistant deans, chancellors and directors.

On Monday, Nov. 17, members of the University community are invited to attend this year's Engaged Scholarship Expo to learn how out-of-classroom academic experiences can complement in-classroom learning. Attendees will hear about engaged scholarship projects already happening and learn about new projects in development. The event takes place 5:00–7:00 p.m. in the HUB-Robeson Center (Heritage Hall) at University Park. 

Academic Advising News: October 2014

October 1, 2014

From now through Friday, October 31, students may nominate advisers for the 2015 Penn State Excellence in Academic Advising Award. Sponsored by the University Advising Council and the Office for Undergraduate Education, the award recognizes and rewards advising excellence. One award is given annually to a faculty member and one to a professional academic adviser. All current full-time University employees with advising responsibilities are eligible. Students who wish to nominate an adviser may complete a short, online form available below.

On Friday, October 24, 11:30 a.m.–1:30 p.m., in 102 Kern Building, University Park, the Division of Undergraduate Studies invites interested members of the Penn State community to attend a panel presentation, "Faculty Senate Petitions: What Advisers Need to Know," part of the Academic Advising Noon Seminar series offered every semester. This presentation will also be available via videoteleconferencing to accommodate participants at other campuses. 

“Some students put a lot of pressure on themselves and think the major they choose will define them for life,” says David Smith, associate dean for advising and the executive director of DUS. “In reality, many careers can come out of any one major. We want to help students understand their options and which may work best for them.”

To help them along, advisers in DUS have developed two web-based tools — MajorQuest and MinorQuest — to help narrow down the possibilities. The tools prompt students to check off their interests and then filter the lists of majors and minors to reflect the students’ choices.

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