Planning for the Future

Academic advisors offer advice and support for students

By Danielle Rebel

As students are filling their wish lists for next semester’s courses, and eagerly staring at their screens waiting for the moment their registration window opens, it can only mean one thing.

It’s time for registration.

Students are required to meet with their academic advisors for help planning course schedules, and to receive an access code needed for online registration.

Professor Theresa Hest, school of communication and journalism, says students are required to visit with their advisors prior to registering for classes, but they’re also encouraged to stop by and discuss any questions or concerns throughout the year.

“I think advising is not all about registration,” Hest said. “Advising is really about having a conversation and about life planning, setting goals.”

The sole purpose of advisors isn’t to hand out access codes to students. Hest says advisors often know of many opportunities students might be interested in.

“I think that it’s part of my job to make sure (students) know what’s available to them,” she said. “I get excited when students get great opportunities.”

For those students who may not feel they are getting the most out of their advising experience, Hest says there is an alternative.

“You can always change your advisor. It’s a very simple procedure. No one takes it personally, because sometimes it’s not a good fit, and that’s OK.”

Hest believes the most important part of advising is building a connection with students and helping them have the best possible experience while attending MSUM.

“It’s a bonus for students,” she said. “Come in and bring your questions; bring your concerns. That’s what we’re here for.”

The Academic Success Center (ASC) is also a great resource for students looking to get more academic and career guidance during their college years.

Hest speaks for all advisors when she says, “I would encourage students to take advantage of (these resources). It’s your time. Use it.”

If you are unsure who your advisor is, visit eServices, click on “Grades and Transcripts” in the left-hand menu. From there, click on “Interactive Degree Audit Report,” commonly known as your DARS, and open the link. Your advisor will be listed on top of the page.

There’s still time to register for Fall 2014. Students are encouraged to meet with their advisors before the end of the semester.