The Provost’s Award for Excellence in Undergraduate Academic Advising is presented annually to an advising center, department, program, or unit that demonstrates a sustained and collective responsibility among faculty and staff to assist students in achieving their educational goals. At the Provost's Awards Reception on Wednesday, October 5, 2016, The Office of Adult Students and Evening Services (OASES) was presented with the 2016 award.
OASES works to recruit and retain a diverse, adult student population. In 2015-2016, 22% of the undergraduate student population was 24 years of age or older. OASES’ advising mission is to assist these adult and nontraditional students in developing and implementing individual plans to achieve their academic and career goals. The office fulfills this mission by offering structured academic advising in a student-centered environment that supports growth and development.
OASES staff recognize adult students engage with the institution differently than traditional students, although engagement is just as critical to retention and success. To accommodate these diverse needs, OASES facilitates a number of support services to enhance the educational experience. One of these services includes Adult Student Orientation, which introduces students to common transitional issues and provides campus resources to overcome those barriers. The Adult Mentoring Program for Students provides new students an opportunity to connect with a current adult student mentor for a smooth transition to college. The Alpha Sigma Lambda Honor Society and the Pinnacle Honor Society celebrate the academic achievements of adult students. OASES advisors administer and interpret the Strong Interest Inventory and the Myers-Briggs Type Indicator career assessments to help students explore interests, personality, and values when choosing majors and careers. Additionally, students are directed to the OASES advising webpage for information on key advising and academic resources.
Surveys administered by OASES assess student learning outcomes to help the office improve advising services and programs. Survey results have guided decision-making and have led to improvements, including the development of the Advising Syllabus to better prepare students for advising appointments, and the development of an Advisor Checklist and Advising Communication Plan which provides efficiency and productivity in the advising process.
The Provost’s Award for Excellence in Undergraduate Academic Advising includes a monetary award and a plaque commemorating the office’s achievements in undergraduate advising.