Student Advising Initiative Launches

In August, a report summarizing the diagnostic phase of the Magis Operational Excellence Program (MOE) was released to the SLU community. (Skip to page 31 for an overview of the focus areas that MOE will address over time.)  The program has launched teams for five focus areas so far...and is announcing its sixth team today -- undergraduate student advising. 

New Initiative Team Announced: Student Advising

The Student Advising Initiative Team seeks to improve the undergraduate advising systems, structures and services that support students from program/major selection to job placement.  This work will build off the past and current efforts of the Student Government Association to assess and improve advising.  

Today, academic and career guidance is made possible through a network of dedicated professionals and faculty across the University.  Some students have reported difficulty navigating all of the resources available to them; others find certain requirements to be unnecessary. 

Despite some challenges, the adviser's role is widely recognized as essential to student success — assuring our students discover personal and professional goals through reflection, remain on-track to an on-time graduation, and can soar into highly competitive career and graduate school placements. 

The Student Advising Initiative Team will seek input and expertise from many stakeholders through a variety of methods, such as interviews, focus groups, community forums and surveys. The Student Government Association will coordinate special forums for students to provide feedback to the Student Advising Initiative Team this spring.  Student forums will also take place in the fall semester.

The team members were selected by Provost Nancy Brickhouse and CFO David Heimburger to provide diverse work experience and perspective, as well as coordinate with existing leadership groups, such as Student Government Association and Academic Advising Leadership Council. The current team members are:

Sponsors

  • Mark Higgins, Ph.D., Dean, Cook School of Business
  • Lisa Israel, Assistant Dean of Students and Director of the Student Success Center

Project Manager

  • Debra Lohe, Ph.D., Director, Reinert Center for Transformative Teaching and Learning

Team

  • Margaret Bultas, Ph.D., R.N., Assistant Professor, School of Nursing
  • Jay Haugen, University Registrar
  • Grant Mayfield, Student, Junior, Student Government Association Vice President for Academic Affairs (2016-2017)
  • Lisa Michigan, M.A., Academic Adviser, Parks College
  • Denise Sleet, Ph.D., Assistant Dean, College of Arts and Sciences

Neutral Budget Impact

Many MOE focus areas are described in the diagnostic report as budget neutral, meaning the aims are to improve processes and reduce bureaucracy; and cost reduction is not an expected outcome. Student Advising is one of MOE's budget neutral focus areas; there is no goal to reduce costs or terminate any staff related to advising services across the university.

Offer Your Expertise

Do you have expertise to offer the Student Advising Initiative Team? Contact project manager Dr. Lohe or send us an email at magisoperationalexcellence@slu.edu.  You can also fill out the feedback form on the program website and we will add your name to the list of important stakeholders who have knowledge, expertise or ideas about improving the processes that lead to successful student support.

Questions

Do you have a question about the Operational Excellence program or the Student Advising Initiative Team? Check out the online FAQs. Send us an email at magisoperationalexcellence@slu.edu or fill out the feedback form on the program website.  Or, reach out to any initiative team project manager or member with ideas, concerns, or questions.

Eric Armbrecht, Ph.D., M.S.
Associate Professor

Mickey Luna, J.D.
Vice President, Human Resources


Launched in February 2016, Magis Operational Excellence is an institution-wide initiative designed to make SLU more efficient and effective, and identify opportunities for increased revenue and growth — all to enable the priorities identified in the University's strategic plan. The program stems from Initiative Five of the strategic plan that calls for us foster a culture of excellence, effectiveness and efficiency deeply rooted in our institutional mission and Catholic, Jesuit values.