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UPDATED: 5 Reasons for Academic and Career Advising Collaboration



In advance of the first of a three-part online series put on by our friends over at the Career Leadership Collective on connecting career services to other campus departments, we're exploring the 'why' around foundational collaboration between academic and career advising departments. 

Although actually implementing steps to foster collaboration between academic and career services takes some initial elbow grease, why it's a good idea to interface the two departments should never be a question. Even baseline transparency between departments - i.e. visibility into each others resources and access to the most up-to-date information -  can lead to increased student engagement and more optimal outcomes.

Here are 5 more reasons that you should get to know your peers in academic advising:

  1. Because early student exposure to career resources means more informed student pathways - and academic advisors by their very function, have earlier access to students. Arm your colleagues in academic advising with all the up-to-date career education information to encourage first and second year students to *start* exploring different career pathways based on personal and academic interests. This period of self-education can gear students for more in-depth encounters with career services when they engage, which they know they need to. 
  2. Because a clear communication channel between departments can inform more holistic advising efforts. Career and academic advising both serve their unique and varied purposes, and even the term 'advising' has its ever-evolving definitions depending on where you work. One thing is for sure, the more you share information, the more you know about a student and the better you can target resources to their specific needs.   
  3. Because sharing feels nice. Chances are, both your career and academic advising departments have some pretty great methods, tools, and information to support students as they navigate their student journey. Chances are, the academic advising team is having conversations and fielding questions related to career prep and job and internship opportunities - and are in a great position to provide resources. Chances are, career services find themselves counseling students on the best classes to take to start a career in, say, Management Consulting. Now imagine a world where you could access each others' toolboxes. Doesn't that feel nice? 
  4. Because the interconnection of academic, career and personal interests makes for a more satisfying college experience. Boosting student understanding around how academic endeavors and extracurricular activities might impact future career plans can impart even more meaning to daily student life - and serve as a motivator. Taking a class with a professor who does active mentoring, or joining a student club for networking practice can expose students to a multitude of different career perspectives. 
  5. Because graduation is a big deal, but an informed career pathway is almost as good as a golden ticket. Students who get to senior year without engaging with career services have undoubtedly missed out on many of the institutionally-unique campus resources that could have helped to inform - and elevate - their career pathway. No one wants to see an underemployed graduate who is stricken with the 'coulda, shoulda' syndrome. 

 uConnect is a student communications platform designed to unlock the valuable resources, data and information that live in the career center and embed them into every aspect of the student journey to inform enrollment, persistence and career readiness. Learn more about how we do what we do. 

Photo Credit: ThinkPublic

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Hannah Chouinard
Hannah Chouinard

A talented marketer, wordsmith and culture curator