What is an advisor?
An advisor works with a student organization taking on roles and responsibilities including, role model, guide, resource, counselor and more. Each advisor has their own style of advising. The advisor role helps with the growth and development of students as they work through organizational purpose, structure and programming. In this process, advisors share insight, provide ideas, offer an objective perspective and counsel students. They are also knowledgeable of the institutions policies and procedures, looking out for how they may impact the organization.
Advisors help provide guidance, insight and perspective to students as they develop and see through projects. While advisors should not be doing the work for their students, they should facilitate learning through student engagement.
Benefits of Advising
There are many benefits associated with advising a student organization.
- Satisfaction of seeing and helping students learn and develop new skills
- Watching a group come together to share common interests, work toward common goals and develop an understanding of differences
- Developing a personal relationship with students
- Becoming more aware of the services that UNI provides students and organizations
- Furthering personal goals or interests by working with an organization that reflects or shares your personal interests
- Sharing one’s knowledge with others
All student organizations are required to have an advisor who is a staff, faculty member or graduate student at UNI. Within the context of the broader mission and policies of the university, advisors shall share insights and directions that allow student organizations to further their objectives and enhance the meaningfulness of organization membership. Specific responsibilities of the advisor may be to:
- Regularly attend general and executive board meetings
- Provide guidance to the officers
- Receive all financial statements and oversee all financial transactions of the organization
- Ensure that officers meet the minimum requirements for holding office as established by the university and the organization’s constitution and by-laws
- Provide consultation concerning membership selection procedures and responsibilities
Ultimately, the specific duties of an advisor should be discussed and agreed upon by the student group and the faculty/staff member.
The impact of an advisor “may be the single most underestimated characteristic of a successful college experience” (Light, 2001, p. 81).
Resources for Advisors
ACPA Committee for Office of Student Involvement’s Advisor Manual
Important Advisor Information
Student Organizations Registration Information: This PowerPoint recaps the information highlighted during the 2022/2023 academic year registration meeting.
ADVISOR AGREEMENT FORM: This form needs to be filled out by new advisors and returning advisors yearly.