Student Success Collaborative-Campus User Profile: Claudia Borke, Academic Advisor In Bioengineering
Written by Janet Ha Poirot
Ever feel there is too much to do in a single day? Academic Advisors often experience this sensation during peak advising periods. It can feel overwhelming when many students come in to see an advisor all at once. Fortunately, Claudia Borke, an Academic Advisor in the Department of Bioengineering, has discovered that using the SSC-Campus product drastically reduced the time she used to spend preparing and meeting with students and it gave her more control over her work flow.
Prior to SSC-Campus an advisor in Bioengineering would typically see lines of students waiting for an advising appointment during registration. Now, Claudia designs and implements Targeted Outreach Campaigns in SSC-Campus to email students who may need support. Her late winter campaign included reaching out to seniors who then scheduled appointments earlier than usual. Claudia was able to check on missing classes or forms thus ensuring timely graduation and reducing student load and lines during peak times.
Claudia has a high degree of confidence in the tool as it tends to deliver the information she needs quickly in an easy-to-read and well-organized format. When meeting with a student all she does is glance over at her computer screen and with a few clicks she can see whom she is meeting with, a brief situational update either in the advising report or note and an overview of the student’s academic progress. The software also reminds her of follow-up meetings with students even months later. By scanning in advising plans and other forms she eliminates trips going back and forth to the file cabinets of the Bioengineering office located on the other wing of her building and it allows her to establish an instant connection with the student. She hopes that students feel welcomed and cared for because she has an immediate grasp of their situations. Claudia remarked, “Using SSC has cut my time with each student in half and instead of collecting the appropriate information from various sources I can now focus on the student’s needs. Scanning in advising plans takes only a couple of minutes but is a huge time saver later on and provides consistency. Often students lose plans or forget to bring them to the session. We just reprint them and save time by starting over. These forms and also notes can be accessed by all advisors at Mason and offer a multi-departmental approach to students who are interested in switching their majors or simply working with several advisors.”
Another very helpful feature is the ability for Claudia to see whether students are enrolled in the correct required course for their major. For example, there is a MATH 203 course specifically for Bioengineering students. With SSC-Campus, Claudia can quickly identify Bioengineering students who enrolled in MATH 203 and compare the special course section class list with the SSC list. In case of a mismatch, she can alert them to drop the course before the Add/Drop deadline so they can then take the correct course. Overall, Claudia greatly appreciates the time SSC-Campus has saved and how it has helped her get organized. Her advice for other advisors new to the product? “Do take the training course but be aware that everyone learns differently so if you have questions, contact Jason and Liz (firstname.lastname@example.org) who are wonderful helpers and resources. Try it out, and give it some time as you learn to navigate it and build your database.” It seems SSC-Campus is not just helping advisors, it is also building a community of enthusiastic users who are all committed to student success and excellence in academic advising.
For more information on Student Success Collaborative-Campus training and other SSC resources please visit – http://advising.gmu.edu/ssc/