I first heard about the advising corps about two or three years ago through friends who served as advisers. Although at the time I was interested in applying, by the time I was graduating I had forgotten about it…until I happened to be in student services one day and saw a poster. I can remember leaving that day and applying because the previous advisers spoke so highly about their time. The difference between their time and mine, however, is this year advisers have been exposed to a completely different side of college access.
One thing that I realized back in November is how selfless we advisers are. Anytime we are asked about our service, more often than not we speak about our students and how great they are. Most of the previous blogs have been testimonies about experiences we have had with our students and I feel that shows how much we do this for the sake of the ones we serve. It didn’t cross my mind, though, that we do need to take time to think about ourselves until Dr. Joanne Marciano urged Arshele, Ashley and myself to take advantage of speaking about ourselves and what we hope to accomplish separate from our students during a conference in South Carolina. It was then that I realized this position offered an entirely different experience I never even knew I would be getting.
Ms. Jasmine Baker, Ms. Arshele Tyus and Ms. Ashley Robinson (lower right) speaking together at “A Dream Deffered”
This year the Corps has made sure to give us opportunities to present best practices in conferences to colleagues in the higher education field. Out of the approximately thirty-five advisers I believe half of us have presented at various conferences throughout the country since October. I had the honor of presenting at a College Board Conference and the experience was phenomenal! Being able to share best practices for our event, Detroit College Night, and have seasoned colleagues respond saying they are going to use what we presented in their events was definitely a blessing.
Often times I get asked what I do and where I’m traveling next because we have been given the opportunity to attend various conferences and I love explaining what I do. This side of advising is icing on the cake. I presented at a conference once before taking this service position but my time this year has definitely solidified my passion for this field. I feel that these opportunities prepare us for our time after service and allow us to use our skill-sets from our various majors outside of our schools. I’m not sure of other service positions that afford these same experiences.