Your Advisor: A Crucial Resource on Your Excelsior Journey

When you become an admitted student at Excelsior College, there may be a moment where you say to yourself: “Now what?!” Trust me, if it doesn’t happen at that point, it will most certainly happen once you graduate. Aside from familiarizing yourself with College policies and online resources via the required CCS*100 course, the very first thing you should be anticipating after you receive your official evaluation is outreach from your assigned academic advisor in the Student Success Center.

Excelsior College advisors specialize in specific areas of study at both the undergraduate and graduate level: business, health sciences, liberal arts, nursing, public service, and technology. Advisors are subject matter experts in the requirements for your program. Advisors are your primary resource for ensuring you select sources of credit toward your degree plan and your academic and career goals, as well as for ensuring you select coursework that completes your degree efficiently. Without your advisor, you run the risk of making your path to degree completion a bit treacherous; our job is to keep it well paved.
So, what does the advising relationship look like from start to finish?

Excelsior’s Student Success Center assigns each academic advisor an individual caseload of students. What that means: Your email and Message Center messages, as well as your course approvals generated though the MAPlanner degree planning tool, go directly to your advisor. When you call the Student Success Center, your call routes directly to your advisor. If they’re away from their desk or on the other line, our student support specialists will take a message and your advisor will return your call by the end of the following business day (often the same day, depending on your call time).

Within the first 48 hours of your official evaluation being completed, you will receive a phone call from your primary academic advisor for your first advising session. This is arguably the most important call you’ll have with your advisor. If you miss the call, don’t fret! Your advisor will leave you a voicemail and send you an email, and you have the option of either calling them back at your convenience, corresponding via email, or setting up a specific appointment time.

What you and your advisor accomplish in that first advising session is up to you. Your advisor will frame out the important tasks to address and leave you with actionable items; the goal ultimately being to give you confidence with your future course planning and comfort as you go into your first set of online courses. The most important piece of that first call, however, is establishing the student/advisor relationship.

I struggle to come up with a way to describe this relationship without using anecdotes and idioms, or equating the duality to Marvel’s Avengers, Game of Thrones, or really any number of popular culture references. This one should be universally well-received: your advisor is “your person.” Whatever you need during your academic tenure, “they’ll be there for you.” If there is a matter concerning your academics that lands outside their scope, they will ensure you get the help you need from the appropriate department. Let your advisor be your advocate, your liaison.

I can’t overstate the importance of interacting directly with your primary academic advisor during your time with Excelsior. The relationship you establish with them will get you through the mountains and valleys that make up the higher ed terrain. There’s also nothing better than an advisor than meeting a student face-to-face, meeting their family, and hearing first hand, without veil of internet or telephone, just what a degree means to them. Don’t miss the opportunity to forge this bond.

Your advisor has a direct phone number and email address; be sure to take note of it, and if you can’t locate the information, don’t hesitate to ask. Your advising sessions will be more efficient when you don’t find yourself attempting to bring another advisor up to speed on what you and your primary have already discussed. The Student Success Center wants to ensure you’re receiving the individual care and attention you deserve, and we collectively wish you all the best in your academic journey.