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Center for Student Success to Revamp Advising

Students’ potential for success is now the focus of a new center that will redesign advising in place and will be overseen by a committee of faculty and administrators to spearhead its creation.

The Center for Student Success, which is in the early stages of initiation by President Jack Miller and Provost Carl Lovitt, will combine with the current advising center to form a system in which freshmen and transfers will be able to speak to an advisor who can direct them to the right path for majors and courses.

“What they’re proposing is that every new student go there,” said Dr. Candace Barrington, of the English department and leading coordinator of the new advising center and a member of the ad-hoc committee of the Faculty Senate to oversee it.

What the university has found is that many students have said that they are unhappy with the current advising system because they have to go from one place to another to receive information on signing up for courses and majors.

Some faculty members are frustrated with the plans to create a new advising system because they wish they had greater input and the process had more open discussion.

“We don’t know what the problem is, [however,] we know that students aren’t happy with advising,” said Dr. David Spector, professor of biology and member of the Faculty Senate.

Other members of the faculty feel that there is not enough information at the moment to make a full decision on how they feel about the formation of the advising center.

“We’re gratified that the President is showing notice to advising,” said Elizabeth Hicks, associate director of the Advising Center.

The ad hoc committee formed to oversee the formation of the student success center will include nine current faculty members and a director position that will give one faculty member a new position as their full-time job.

“When students are well in their major, they will be transferred from the master advisor to a professional advisor familiar with academic programs and career planning in that chosen major,” Miller wrote in an email sent to all CCSU students.

The e-mail also discussed how the center will help students with disabilities, students looking to declare a major and provide transfer students with adequate orientation.

The center, slated to be installed for the Fall 2009 semester, doesn’t have an exact location specified yet.

“I think the March 10 Board of Trustees meeting will have to have some movement,” said Miller at the Feb. 18 Student Government Association meeting.

The center will have advisors who can answer student questions whenever they need with increased hours and more available advising. President Miller said 15 or 16 employees will work in the center.

“If I could have it my way,” Barrington said, “this committee will remain alive for a long time.”


-Matthew Kiernan, News Editor: