Each aspect of a college campus contributes to the success of its students.
Professionals in the field of student affairs in higher education (SAHE) partner with academic affairs units on different campuses to create holistic collegiate experiences that support undergraduate student success that results in degree attainment.
Since 2015, the Division of Student Affairs (DOSA) and the SAHE Program have partnered to hold a campus wide assessment symposium which features academic work completed by SAHE students at MSU.
“Students in our master’s program learn about the different assessment evaluation tools they can use to assess the effectiveness of campus units and how they contribute to undergraduate student success,” explained Dr. Gilbert Brown, SAHE program director.
“The symposium helps our new professionals gain skills that are needed in the workplace, and it contributes to the office of student affairs here at MSU.”
The assessment symposium
Graduate students in the SAHE program present their research at the assessment symposium as part of their academic requirements.
“Our first-year students develop an assessment protocol for trying to determine the effectiveness of a unit and our second-year students have completed their project,” Brown said.
“When our students graduate from MSU, they’re ready to hit the ground running when they are hired by another university.”
Skills for success
Brown knows both the ropes and the challenges that new SAHE professionals face as they enter the field.
“We have to improve our understanding of how to use social media to make sure undergraduate students have good experiences on campus,” Brown explained.
“Universities often have limited resources, so having evidence of effectiveness is necessary to point to what is working.”
The skills SAHE students gain through the assessment symposium allow them to contribute to undergraduate student success on the MSU campus and wherever their future career takes them.
The success of the assessment symposium points to the preparedness of the students within the program, as well as the professional collaboration that takes place at MSU.
“The Division of Student Affairs here on campus and our academic program work well together to prepare the next generation of student affairs professionals,” Brown said. “I’m pleased with the professional partnership we have with our colleagues.”