Izzy Pipa

Utilize Student Services to answer advising questions

April 7, 2022

Browser tabs opened to the UVM registrar, lists of possible CRNs and the schedule of courses means registration season is upon the University.

Academic advisers are supposed to help students meet educational and career goals, according to the Center for Academic Success. However these advisers often also work as professors.

Students should reach out to the professional academic advisers in their respective Dean’s Office to talk through problems before their assigned adviser.

UVM assigns every student an academic adviser, according to the Center for Academic Success. These assigned individuals are professors too, making their host of responsibilities extend outside of answering questions.

Responses from an assigned adviser often take time, as advising is not the main focus of their job. I’ve needed to email twice to get a response from my assigned adviser.

Advisers lose emails as well, since their students fill their inbox with course-related questions. 

Student Services staff’s sole purpose is advising. They help students with questions and offer direct support, according to the School and College Student Services.

If I have a question that needs an immediate answer, I go to Student Services.

While I appreciate my assigned adviser, sometimes I have questions only a person dedicated to advising knows the answer to.

My college, the Rubenstein School of Environment and Natural Resources, has six personnel dedicated to undergraduates and one for graduates in their Student Services staff, according to Student Services.

The registrar removed a class that I needed for my minor last semester, and I worked with both my assigned adviser and Student Services to receive an exception on my degree audit.

Student Services offers meet-ups in the Dean’s Office to chat, according to a Dec. 8, 2021 email from Ryan Buckley, a professional academic adviser to the RSENR undergraduate list. 

I found out that I needed to register for a new class through a meet-up and found potential classes to take. The removal of the class impacted more students than just me, so Student Services knew how to help.

Their dedication to support means they answer questions supportively and in a timely manner.

My assigned adviser needed to speak with the department head to figure out a solution, so I took it upon myself to find the answers elsewhere. 

In my experience, it is easier to email one’s assigned adviser with the solution in place so they just have to sign-off on it than rely on them for solving all issues.

If a student has never talked to their school’s respective Student Services staff, I would recommend reaching out. These professionals can lead us through any dilemma.

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