NSights Blog

Keeping students on track: Early advising can be critical

One of the keys to a successful student experience is regular academic advising

Advising and registration are critical components to students staying on track and graduating in a timely manner. Understanding these important components, I think about how we, as faculty, must get this mentality in our students' heads as early as possible. For me, that time is orientation.  

In a ballroom full of parents, I have made the same request during every session of summer orientation. I let parents know that we want to work with their son or daughter and help each student become successful.    One trick I use to help parents remember to talk to their students about getting their mandatory advising done early, is a simple reminder: "If you haven't had a conversation with your student about what they are going to do for the next semester by October 31st, it's Halloween ... you should be a little scared. They may be late in the process to getting registered for classes on time."   

After a few chuckles from the parents in the room, I am amazed at how many of them approach me later to say that they'll use that information to remember to have a talk with their student about advising and registration.   The University's adopted campaign to promote students' timely progress to graduation, 30 to Complete, encourages students to complete at least 30 credits a year in order to finish undergraduate study in four years by meeting the minimum 120 credits to graduate. Pivotal in this initiative is a student taking advantage of their registration date and getting enrolled for their next semester before those classes fill. 

This is why I emphasized early communication with advisors to the parents (and students) of each year's freshman class.   Halloween is around the corner! All faculty and staff can help spread the message of getting students to set up advising appointments so that they can get the guidance needed to stay on track and graduate on time.   For more information about the University Advising Center, visit https://www.unr.edu/academic-central/academic-advising/all-topics/contact-advisors/university-advising-center. Students can also email advising@unr.edu or call 775-784-4684.    

Derek Furukawa