This is a document sent to me by Jeff Hall of Covenant College. You can download it or read it here. -Jonathan Davis
The Role of Advisors
Advisors are essential to the success of student organizations. Serving can be time‑consuming or it may only require a few short meetings each semester. It can be a burdensome task, but only if one chooses to make it so.
Studies have shown that there is one individual who, if not the most important, is of considerable importance in an organization's long term success and stability. This individual is the organization's advisor. Research has revealed that the presence of an organization advisor - who is active, interested, and effective - is highly correlated with successful student organizations.
1. TEACHING. To teach effectively in an extracurricular situation, the Advisor should actively participate. Advisors should assist and facilitate so that students can develop leadership skills. In addition, an advisor should challenge the organization to develop new and creative programs which can contribute to the education mission and vision of Covenant College.
2. CONSULTATION ON PROGRAMS/ACTIVITIES. Advisors should be aware of what is being planned and should offer input and criticism. It is also the Advisor's responsibility to ensure
that all college procedures are followed when planning activities. Any program or production put
on by the club or organization should have the full knowledge and permission of the Advisor.
3. PROVIDING CONTINUITY. Students come and go over generations. Advisors can provide an awareness of history, context and policy. Advisors can help new student leaders by maintaining records, minutes, etc. of the past and instruct them in their expected duties and responsibilities.
4. COUNSELING INDIVIDUAL STUDENTS. Students often need a listening ear and solid advice. The advisor should be available and reachable via phone, email and office hours.
5. INTERPRETATION OF POLICY. Advisors should encourage the organization and its officers to be familiar with Covenant College policies and why they exist. Questions of interpretation should be directed to the Office of Student Development.
6. SUPERVISION. The advisor should work with, and through, the responsible officer of the
organization to maintain standards and control individual and group behavior in consultation with the Office of Student Development. The advisor has the authority with the Office of Student Development to postpone an event or publication if deemed inappropriate until further review.
7. FINANCIAL SUPERVISION. The advisor should make sure that the organization is aware of
the proper financial channels at Covenant College.
8. ORGANIZATIONAL MEETINGS. The advisor should attend regular and special meetings of
the organization. It is not necessary that the advisor attend every meeting, but enough to assure knowledge of the organization’s work as well as familiarity with the members of the organization so they feel comfortable going to the advisor for assistance.
9. SCHOLASTIC ASPECTS. The advisor should be alert to poor scholarship and be willing to
advise curtailment of activity with the organization when necessary. In organizations where
a minimum GPA is required, it is the responsibility of the advisor to see that those who do
not meet the requirement are dismissed.
10. ORGANIZATIONAL RECORDS. The advisor should see that all organization leaders maintain adequate records and minutes of organizational meetings that can then be passed on to the new leaders each year.
11. COMMUNICATION. The advisor is responsible for handling all communication between the
Office of Student Development and the organization during those times when officers have not
yet been determined. The Advisor is also responsible for ensuring that an Advisor Consent Form is
completed and submitted at the beginning of each academic year.
12.INSTITUTIONAL REQUIREMENTS. Each organization is required to have an advisor who is a full-time staff or faculty member. Organizations will not be recognized by the college without an advisor. Should an advisor leave mid-year, the organization will not be allowed to access funds or sponsor events until a replacement advisor has been found.
13. PUBLICATION REQUIREMENTS. The advisor for any publication (Tartan, Bagpipe, Thorn, Drama and Musical Theatre productions, and WKLT) will be involved in determining the appropriateness for publication, distribution and performance of all material prior to public dispersal. Covenant College is the responsible publisher of all publications. In this capacity, the college, through the advisor, will give direction and determine policy. Although the college will seek to avoid prior restraint when possible, it is acknowledged that the college, through the advisor, has the right to act in the interests of the college and delay publication and distribution when necessary. This policy would also apply to any publication or production whose primary objective is satire or caricature.