As the 2017 CACUSS conference draws near, the task of planning one’s time to make the most of the event is top of mind. Each year, we’re overwhelmed by the number of fabulous sessions to choose from and the variety of topics that are presented. There is so much going on at the conference that it’s almost a test of stamina to be able to take advantage of the sessions and networking opportunities. As a way of helping attendees focus on a particular interest area, the conference program this year will identify both the Communities of Practice (CoP) and the CACUSS competencies that are relevant to a particular session. These will be added to the digital program to help you easily choose the sessions might be the most relevant to your interests. It is worth noting not every presenter added a Community of Practice to their proposal so it’s in your best interest to read through the program and find the gems of sessions that will enhance your conference experience.
As the co-chairs of The Advising CoP (as we will officially be known – phew – because our old name was just so much of a mouthful to say and type and don’t even get us started on printing buttons!), we have provided a list of topics for several of the advising specific sessions for your consideration. From advising special populations, to advising models, to advising portfolios, the CACUSS conference promises to deliver a variety of sessions to address your advising challenges. The breadth of topics relevant to advisors and those with a keen interest in advising includes:
- Advising special populations
- Grad students
- Online students
- At-risk students
- Advising models
- Integration of career and academic advising
- Collaboration between student affairs and academic affairs
- Advising Approaches and frameworks
- Advising and retention
- Appreciative advising
- Advisors as cultural navigators
- Professional development
- Advising communities
- Student Affairs collective
- Team building
- Academic learning and storytelling
As an association that embraces student services of all types, we would be remiss if we did not encourage all attendees to find sessions that will help them expand their own professional practice. And we all know that conferences are more than just attending fabulous sessions, they are also about opportunities to network with old friends and a chance to meet new colleagues from across the country. Since the introduction of the CoP model a couple of years ago, CACUSS has built in opportunities for professionals to network with like-minded folk both during the conference and at social events. This year, the Advising CoP will be hosting both a CoP social (Monday, June 12 at 6:00 pm at the Highlander Pub) and a CoP meeting on Tuesday, June 13 at 9:00 am (which is so much better than 7:30 am), we hope you will mark these in your calendar!
At our CoP meeting on Tuesday morning, our goal will be to meet with folks who want to either find out more about our CoP or folks who would like to become more involved with our activities. We are open to your ideas about the types of activities that the CoP should be working on throughout the year, so reaching out to the co-chairs of the CoP is a great way to become more engaged and active. We will also be launching our steering committee later this summer that will have a number of small projects over the course of the year.
Finally, we would like to thank Tim Fricker, outgoing co-chair for the Advising CoP, for his tireless work and effort to establish the Integrated Academic and Professional Advising CoP. We hope that he will continue to be involved in the great advising conversations that we have been fortunate to have begun over the last couple of years. Joining us as in the role of in-coming co-chair for the Advising CoP will be Paige Doherty from St. Jerome’s University, federated with the University of Waterloo. Paige is currently working on her M. Ed and has been involved with CACUSS as a conference reviewer, presenter and CoP member for the past two years. We are looking forward to Paige’s contributions in the Advising CoP.
Shea Ellingham, Mount Royal University
Darran Fernandez, University of British Columbia
Tim Fricker, Mohawk College
Paige Doherty, St. Jerome’s University