The university academic advising coordinator (UAAC) post is new to Cal Poly Pomona, but the person selected for the role is not.
Selyna Beverly started her new position as the first UAAC on March 9, a post funded through the student success fee. For three years prior, she was an undergraduate advisor for the College of Engineering.
In her new role, Beverly will coordinate advising on the Cal Poly Pomona campus, working collaboratively with professional advisors and faculty advisors across all disciplines to further enhance advising practices.
The hiring of a coordinator and the addition of 10 college-based advisors demonstrate the university’s commitment to academic advising and students’ success, Beverly says.
“We need someone to make sure everyone is on the same page and that there is a collective mission and vision for advising,” she says.
One year ago, there were only a few professional advisors on campus, but now every college has at least one.
The push to hire more academic advisors is occurring at many CSU campuses.
“Cal Poly Pomona is unique because we have a collaborative relationship between faculty and professional advisors,” she said. “Ours is a decentralized mixed model, where academic advising takes place through college-based advising offices and centers and where faculty and professional advisors share the responsibilities for guiding students through the rigors of higher education and their degree requirements. We have a great partnership and work well together.”
Beverly, a Southern California native, has been involved in some aspect of advising for most of her professional career, starting as a peer advisor while an undergraduate at UC Santa Barbara.
She attended graduate school at Michigan State University, earning a master’s in higher-education administration. Beverly later served as a senior academic advisor for new media, game design and information technology at the Rochester Institute of Technology in New York.
“It has given me a lot of perspective on institutions of higher education,” she says of working as an advisor in different capacities and different types of organizations. “It’s helped me learn and grow.”
Beverly started the Academic Advisors Council two years ago and will continue to foster the growth of that group, which will meet periodically to clarify academic procedures and policies and make sure they are being implemented with consistency across the campus.
The council will be the venue where best practices on student-centered, developmental advising are shared and where campus-based speakers can present on topics relevant to academic advising. Faculty and staff advisors also will have access to on-campus professional development.
Beverly has already begun working on several changes that include upgrading the advising website and crafting a periodic advisor e-newsletter.
When she was hired in the College of Engineering, her advising job was a newly created position so she has experience in “startup” operations. Beverly is excited by the possibilities her current role will have in transforming academic advising at CPP.
“I like being able to lead, but I think with leadership, it’s important that it’s a shared experience among everyone,” she says. “The direction of academic advising at Cal Poly Pomona is truly a collaborative venture aimed at impacting student success in a positive way.”