You may be wondering why a student organization would want a campus advisor when most of the students are competent and capable leaders. Campus advisor involvement can significantly benefit the student organization. Given the myriad of purposes, activities, and objectives of various student groups, the role of the advisor will vary in some degree between groups.
Advisors have a variety of roles with an organization including a mentor, teacher, leader and follower. The advisor and students must have regular communication in order for the campus advisor to advise the organization on its day-to-day operations and activities. Ideally, the advisor assists the organization members and officers in staying in compliance university policies and applicable laws. Advisors should also assist student leaders in developing critical thinking skills in the areas of event planning, risk management, organization management, organization processes and ethical decision-making among other areas for personal development.
It is understood at times the advisor may disagree with an organizational decision and/or activities, but decision-making and goal setting for the organization must remain in the hands of student membership.
- Assist the organization in planning realistically
- Attend all organization meetings and other events as needed
- Value student wellness and balance
- Encourage student participation and responsibility
- Provide organization consistency, especially during officer transitions
- Attend all training sessions as required
- Uphold all university policies and keep the organization accountable
- Assist the organization with any emergencies as needed
Attributes of a Good Campus Advisor
- Aware: Knows what is happening with the organization at all times…problems, dates of function, etc.
- Dedicated: Willing to assist the organization when necessary. Enjoys being associated with the organization and is very involved.
- Visible: Attends meetings, programs and organization activities
- Informed: Familiar with the rules, policies, and regulations of the university and the bylaws of the organization. Is prepared to render assistance with their interpretation.
- Supportive: Provides encouragement and praise to organization members.
- Open-Minded: Willing to consider new ideas and approaches although s/he may not totally agree with them.
- Respected: Earned respect through being trustworthy, honest, and demonstrating a genuine interest in the welfare of the organization.