posted on August 22, 2022 01:02
Melinda J. Anderson, NACADA Executive Director
Fall is a time of major change on campuses.
It’s when high school graduates officially become college students and when cadres of undergraduates advance to the next level in their academic career. For academic advisors, fall is about helping students identify their passion and finding their purpose.
While I absolutely love my position as NACADA Executive Director, I must admit that I miss the rhythm of campus life and all the beautiful student interactions that came with my role as an academic advisor. I miss students. I miss cheering them on and watching them succeed and being the person, they felt safe turning to when things did not go as they hoped, planned, dreamed or expected.
However, one of the ways I’ve continued to connect myself to these experiences is by attending NACADA events. Our conferences and institutes are filled with professionals who share a spectrum of student stories—from those that are heartwarming to triumphant to painful. Higher education is difficult terrain for a myraid of reasons and for many students, reasons we can’t necessarily see.
While I’ve shared, I miss daily student interaction, what’s fueled me is knowing the value of NACADA’s work. When advisors share examples of how using NACADA’s core competencies impacted their advising practice or how a colleague read an article in one of our publications and it completely altered their approach with a student, I know I’m in the right place for all the right reasons.
When I read conference proposals in my current position, it’s like peering into a live advising session. The topics are real, relevant, and they make a difference. One of the beautiful aspects of our Annual Conference is you will be surrounded by subject matter experts who only have one goal: to help you find the strategies and techniques you are looking for. So, if you haven’t registered, I invite you to do so. It will be one of the best things you can do for you advising practice and students this fall.
I will be thinking about all of you as you head into the fall semester. I know your energy, time and talents will empower students to find the very thing they are looking for – their purpose. Continue to take care of yourselves as our work never seems to never stop. And as always NACADA is here to support and guide you on your professional journey.
Melinda J. Anderson, Ed.D.
NACADA: The Global Community for Academic Advising