The Wisconsin Academic Advising Association (WACADA) will recognize three University of Wisconsin Oshkosh academic advising professionals, including a student adviser, at a state conference later this month.
Nominated by Liz Whalley, director of the Undergraduate Advising and Resource Center (UARC) at UW Oshkosh, both David Jones, chair of the criminal justice department and faculty adviser, and Michele Schlinsog, UARC adviser for students in the College of Nursing, will receive excellence awards for their dedication and commitment to UW Oshkosh students at the WACADA annual conference Sept. 21-22 at the University of Wisconsin-LaCrosse.
The WACADA Awards are intended to recognize individuals who work with, for and in favor of students in an academic advising capacity, and those who have demonstrated outstanding dedication to the profession of academic advising.
Jones will receive the Faculty Adviser Excellence Award, which acknowledges candidates who exhibit a wide range of effective qualities including strong interpersonal skills, mastery of regulations, policies and procedures and willingness to treat students as an individual of worth and potential.
In Jones’ nomination, Whalley wrote: “Dr. Jones is probably one of the most approachable faculty members you will ever meet. He has an easy, non-threatening styled that serves him well as an adviser…In additional to his direct advising of students, David is a committed advocate for advising and advising-related programs and initiatives. He attends nearly every faculty development session we offer on the topic of advising, served several years on the Advisory Council for Comprehensive Academic advising and was a member of the Early Alert Task Force.”
Schlinsog will receive the Advising Excellence Award, which is awarded to those who exhibit exemplary qualities of an academic adviser, including strong interpersonal skills, a caring attitude toward students and mastery of regulations, policies and procedures.
In Schlinsog’s nomination, Whalley wrote: “…She has a natural gift at connecting with students; calming their fears, alleviating their anxiety and helping them make sense of complex information so that they can make good decisions…She is a great resource for students because of her broad knowledge of campus resources and her practice of referring to a specific person rather than a general office.”
Beyond the recognition of UW Oshkosh faculty and staff advisers, Ashley Stevens, a student Peer Advising Liaison (PAL) through the UARC will also be recognized. Stevens, who is studying elementary education and history, has been a peer adviser for two years and will continue her role through her graduation in December.
Stevens’ nomination describes her as responsible, calm, organized, confident and a good role model to other PALs. In Stevens’ role, she helps students navigate through general education requirements, class registration, degree audits and also staffs a satellite office within a residence hall to provide advising help to students.
“Other PALs look to her for clarification when they encounter something confusing; moreover, she very conscientiously seeks correct information when she is not certain about an answer…She exemplifies the type of peer adviser UW Oshkosh is proud to have as part of our campus community,” Cindy Fruhwirth, director of the PALs program, wrote in Stevens’ nomination.
The UW Oshkosh PAL program in its entirety was also selected as an Exemplary Practice to be included in the second edition of the National Academic Advising Association Peer Advising Monograph, Whalley said. The program, which is funded by differential tuition, was nominated by Fruhwirth.
“It is an honor to be selected from the numerous submissions from across the nation and cited as a model for other campuses to follow,” Whalley said. “This recognition is a testament to the amazing work Cindy, the entire PAL committee in the UARC and the PALs do every day to help our students successfully navigate their college experience.”