ONT-Advise, Spring 2011
A Newsletter About Post-secondary Academic Advising* in
Ahhhh….deep, cleansing breath….that is the feeling that many of us will be having now that the Fall/Winter terms have ended. As Mother Nature prepares s for a lovely summer, many of us will be doing all kinds of spring cleaning – leaning out our offices (that old paperwork does have a way of
accumulating!), cleaning our houses and cars, and cleaning our selves and our inds as we take vacations and breaks from work. Here’s hoping that everyone will get all of their cleaning done and become prepared for a new academic year in September!
Thanks to everyone who submitted logo ideas for the Ontario Academic
Advising Professionals. All were great attempts at graphic design, but the
Steering Committee had to choose one submission to represent this group of academic advisors to which you belong. Congratulations are extended to Simon Looker at Lakehead (Orillia). The logo that Simon submitted has been adopted to represent this group of academic advisors in Ontario to which you belong. It will be used on this newsletter, and on any other professional development material that is endorsed by the Ontario Academic Advising Professionals (OAAP).
Each of you who has received this newsletter is a member of OAAP. There is no cost for membership, but the only way that we have been able to gather names on the list is by word of mouth. The list started out in 2007 with about 150 names from Ontario. Since then, news has spread, and there are now just over 600 academic advisors on the list that is used for distribution of professional development news and OAAP conference information. Thanks to everyone for helping to spread the word. If you know of anyone at your institution who did not receive a copy of ONT-Advise, but who may be interested in going on the list, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org to be added. There are some
institutions in the province that are very underrepresented on the list, and
despite outreach activities by members of the Steering Committee, that
continues to be the case, so we continue to encourage you to let us know if you would like to go on the list, or if you know of anyone who should be added. Adding a name comes with benefits, too! When Suzette Aleung at York University joined the list a few weeks ago, she was the 600th person to be included in the list of academic advisors who now receive information about professional development in Ontario and beyond (we have members in Newfoundland, Quebec, Manitoba, Alberta, British Columbia, Yukon Territory, and even one transplanted Ontarian in Texas). Suzette will receive a special prize from the Steering Committee for helping us to reach the 600 mark. Congratulations to Suzette, and keep sending those names along!
The Centre for Higher Education Research and Development (CHERD) currently offers many professional development opportunities for college and university administrators in Canada (see http://umanitoba.ca/centres/cherd/ for information). It has just been announced that CHERD will be offering a new program for Canadian academic advisors. Watch for the launching of a new CHERD program in Academic Advising. The program will be delivered on line and successful completion will result in a certificate. Further details about the certificate are expected soon, and will be sent to the OAAP listserv when they become available.
The next conference for Ontario Academic Advising Professionals will be held in Sudbury this fall. “Are We There Yet? Advising Students Through Uncharted Terrain” will be hosted by Huntington University on October 26-27, 2011. The conference program and keynote speaker appear to offer academic advisors a wonderful opportunity for some professional development and networking, so be sure to save those dates! Consider taking part in the conference by submitting a presentation proposal too. Presenting at conferences can be a great way to expand your knowledge and experiences, add something to your CV, and to network with fellow advisors from across the province who have interests that are similar to yours. Announcements about the conference have been sent to all members of OAAP. If you have not yet received conference information, or would like information to be sent to someone who is not yet on the OAAP mailing list, please contact Alison Hood at the confernce email
address (email@example.com). Information about the conference can also be found at www.huntingtonu.ca.
Looking Down The Road – The 2012 Conference
Have you ever thought about hosting a conference at your institution? It can be an exciting and very rewarding challenge. Since the tradition of an annual advisors’ conference in Ontario re-started at Brock University (2007), we have met at the University of Guelph (2008), Seneca College (2009), and a collaborative effort between Durham College, UOIT, Trent University-Oshawa (2010). This year, we are heading north of the 401 to Huntington University in Sudbury, but we are seeking a conference site for 2012. Hosting the conference comes with supporting material (a binder of information that has been gathered over the last couple of years), and a seed fund that can be used for start-up costs. If you would like to consider hosting the conference at your institution next year, please submit a very brief paragraph containing the proposed date, place, and the name of the proposed conference committee Chair to the OAAP Steering Committee (Marty Lowman, Tracey Szarka, Shari Dorr, and Annette Rondeau). If more than one proposal comes forward, conference sites will be tentatively determined for years in the future.
Wanted: Two New Drivers! Steering Committee Seeks to Fill Seats
The Ontario Academic Advising Professionals’ Steering Committee, which was formalized with terms of reference in the last academic year, is seeking to fill two positions as two of our founding members complete their terms. This is an exciting opportunity to help shape the face of academic advising on Ontario and beyond!
Steering Committee members work to maintain a professional level of
communications, events, and other activities; provide financial accountability to the general membership of OAAP; and maintain membership information in a professional and confidential manner. For more information on the roles and responsibilities of the Steering Committee, you can review the Terms of Reference available on the OAAP website: www.ontarioadvising.webs.com.
We are currently looking to fill the requirements for a representative from a
Northern Post-Secondary Institution, and one from a College. A representative who is francophone would also be desirable but not necessary. Now, if you happen to be a francophone advisor from a Northern College, that would be great! We would, however, still require a second representative.
The Steering Committee would like to recognize the incredible energy,
dedication and vision of our retiring members, Jill Johnson from the University of Guelph, and Jo Stewart from Brock University. Thank you for all you have done to raise the professional profile of Academic Advising in Ontario!
OAAP has a website where past issues of this newsletter are archived, links to websites that are pertinent to academic advising are housed, and information about current conferences will be linked. There are many things that can happen with a website – blogs, forums, pages for advisors with particular interest (e.g., student success advisors, faculty advisors, advisors from particular academic programs, etc.). Given the geographical size of Ontario, the website has the potential to become a real connection tool, but your help is needed. What would you like to see online? How can the website be used to help you to connect with fellow advisors from across the province to share best practices? Check it out at www.ontarioadvising.webs.com. If you have ideas about how the website can be juiced up to provide better professional development for OAAP members, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org with your ideas.
*Academic Advising is to be understood in its broadest sense and may include those involved in providing academic advice, career advice, counseling, liaison services, and/or learning skills opportunities in order to promote student success and retention.