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2018 Advising Academy Preliminary Agenda

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Day One | September 20, 2018 | Atlanta Evergreen Marriott Conference Resort (jump to Day Two)

10:00 am – 11: 00 am

Registration and Check-in

11:00 am – 11:15 pm

Evergreen Salon ABC&D

11:15 am – 12:00 pm

Supporting a Successful Transition to College
Evergreen Salon ABC&D
Dr. Tristan Denley, Executive Vice Chancellor for Academic Affairs

12:00 pm – 1:00 pm

Evergreen Salon ABC&D

1:00 pm – 2:15 pm

Keynote Panel: Keys to Successful Transition Planning

Four national leaders in transition share their experiences and practices in an open conversation to begin the work of rethinking transition.

Evergreen Salon ABC&D

Bonita Jacobs, University of North Georgia

Courtney Fitzgerald Brafford, University of Memphis

Leonard Bass, Valencia College

Jenny Osborn, The Ohio State University

2:15 pm – 3:15 pm

Breakout 1: Structuring Success


Each presenter from the panel and institutional partners will lead a smaller discussion of how they accomplished their work and help institutions begin to shape their work. Rooms are listed below the speaker name.


Bonita Jacobs

University of North Georgia
Rhododendron Room


Different students require different information and different experiences to make the transition to college. Dr. Jacobs’ research and her institutional work has investigated the many ways to support different groups of students as they become integrated into the institution.


Leonard Bass

Valencia College

Juniper Room

Integrating Academic and Student Affairs/First Year Experience

Bringing together academic and student affairs in the process of the transition to college is important to help students build lasting connections to the school as they develop and explore their skills and interests.  Valencia College begins these connections early with a robust First Year Experience program that supports these connections and makes the most of faculty advising at an institution serving 70,000 students.


Courtney Brafford

University of Memphis

Wintergreen Room

Orchestrated Guidance and Student Advocates

For many potential students, what they don’t know can be the difference between enrolling and being successful and staying out of higher education.  The University of Memphis has developed a program of student advocates who help to guide students through the process of application toward enrollment both on campus and online, providing a single point of contact for students who may have questions that cut across functional areas on campus.


Jenny Osborn

The Ohio State University

Balsam Room

Student Connections Throughout the Year

The transition to college is more than a day or two (or three) in the summer or before classes start.  The transition may begin when a student first steps foot on campus, but continues through their first year (and possibly beyond).  The Ohio State University uses student leaders to maintain contact with new students throughout the year, applying intelligent risk modeling and a calendar of campaigns to support personal contacts throughout the year.


Chris Hulleman

Motivate Lab, University of Virginia

Barberry Room

Building Productive Mindsets

Developing social belonging and a sense of the purpose and value for a student at an institution is critical to their becoming integrated and engaged in the school. UVA’s Motivate Lab is a national partner for institutions and systems looking for research-based approaches to supporting student success by helping students connect with their academic work and campus communities.


Nikolas Huot

Complete College America

Holly Room

Career Connections: Purpose First

Making clear connections between college and career contributions to a student’s sense of purpose in their coursework and in college. Complete College America’s Purpose First initiative brought consortia of higher education institutions from different states to design a new model of advising and student onboarding that would equip students with valuable information, empower their decision-making, and build early academic momentum as they work toward degrees and ultimately careers.

3:15 pm – 3:30


3:30 pm – 4:45 pm

Breakout 2: Reviewing and Institutional Teams

Institutions should review the key elements for transition to college, reflect upon their survey results and their assessment of where they currently are on each, and identify the key areas where they would like to work to improve their transition to college. At the end of Breakout 2, institutions should have identified their priority areas for planning, detailed their current status and what they want to accomplish in this area, and filled this information into your Transition Improvement Plan in your Google Drive folder. Rooms below:


Abraham Baldwin Agricultural College (HOLLY)

Albany State University (SALON ABCD)

Atlanta Metropolitan State College (BALSAM)

Augusta University (SALON ABCD)

Clayton State University (SALON ABCD)

College of Coastal Georgia (JUNIPER)

Columbus State University (SALON ABCD)

Dalton State College (BALSAM)

East Georgia State College (HOLLY)

eCore (BALSAM)

Fort Valley State University (HOLLY)

Georgia College & State University (JUNIPER)

Georgia Gwinnett College (SALON ABCD)

Georgia Highlands College (MAGNOLIA)

Georgia Institute of Technology (MAGNOLIA)

Georgia Southern University (SALON ABCD)

Georgia Southwestern State University (MAGNOLIA)

Georgia State University (SALON ABCD)

Gordon State College (SALON ABCD)

Kennesaw State University (SALON ABCD)

Middle Georgia State University (HOLLY)

Savannah State University (SALON ABCD)

University of Georgia (BARBERRY)

University of North Georgia (JUNIPER)

University of West Georgia (BARBERRY)

Valdosta State University (BARBERRY)

5:00 pm – 5:30 pm

Big Ideas from Across the System

During the 2018 RACAA/RACSA Summer Meeting, Vice Presidents for Student and Academic Affairs engaged in a human centered design exercise to ideate around the transition to college.  The ideas and concepts developed during this exercise represent some creative thinking to fuel your discussions and plans.

Evergreen Salon ABC&D

Dinner on your own



Day Two | September 21, 2018 | Atlanta Evergreen Marriott Conference Resort

7:30 am – 8:00 am


Prefunction 2

8:00 am – 8: 45 am

Opening Remarks & Framing for Day Two
Transition Stories from the System

Evergreen Salon ABC&D

Heather Collins and Jonathan Watts Hull, University System Office

8:45 am – 9:15 am

Building from Scratch-Gordon College’s Highlander Edge

Evergreen Salon ABC&D

Jeff Knighton, Vice President for Academic Affairs

Peter Higgins, Assistant Vice President for Academic Excellence

Gordon State College

9:15 am – 10:15 am

Breakout 3: Institutional Team Time

Return to your breakout rooms from Day 1

Review your priority areas from day one and begin to identify key steps, strategies, and objectives to make your goals reality.  Plan out the changes and new activities that you want to adopt and who will be responsible for these activities.  At the end of Breakout 3, institutions should have identified your expected changes and the people responsible for this work and filled this information into your Transition Improvement Plan in your Google Drive folder.

10:15  am – 10:30 am


10:30 am – 11:30 am

Panel: Student and Practitioner Perspective

Evergreen Salon ABC&D

Darcy Hayes, Director of Orientation & Transition Programs

Walt Chapeau, Walt Chapeau, Orientation Leader

Konnor Sanders, New Student

University of North Georgia

11:30 am – 12:30 pm

Breakout 4: Institutional Team Time

Return to your breakout room Breakout 3

Institutions should use this breakout to refine your plans from the morning, develop measures of success and goals for this work.  Institutions should identify the single idea that they are most excited about or which they feel will have the greatest impact to report on during the post lunch session.

12:30 pm – 1:30 pm


Evergreen Salon ABC&D

1:30 pm – 2:30 pm

Institutional Reports on Their One Big Thing

2:30 pm – 3:00 pm

Final Remarks and Adjournment