Tips for Establishing a Solid Advisor/Organization Relationship

The relationship between an advisor and an organization will vary, not only with each organization, but from time to time within an organization. Nevertheless, the general concerns of the advisor remain constant. Below is an outline of expectations of an advisor in order to give both the advisor and the organization a base from which to develop a mutually beneficial relationship.

  • The advisor recognizes and supports participation in student organizations for its contribution to the educational and personal development of students.
  • Advisors should work with student organizations but should not direct or dictate the organization’s programs or activities. Advisors should be frank however, in offering ideas or considerations for the group’s discussion.
  • The advisor should stay well informed about the plans and activities of the group. It is expected that advisors will attend as many meetings and activities of the group as possible and will consult frequently with the student officers.
  • The advisor must be aware of the goals and directions of their organization and help the group evaluate its progress toward reaching those goals.
  • The advisor can provide continuity within the group from year to year. He or she should be familiar with the constitution and bylaws of the organization and be prepared to assist with the interpretation of such.
  • Advisors ensure the group’s compliance with University policies and procedures.
  • Advisors should provide financial supervision to the organization. Advisors should also be aware of the general financial condition of the organization and make sure the group is keeping accurate and accessible financial records.
  • The advisor should assist in orienting new officers and assist in developing the leadership skills of members.
  • The advisor should be prepared to deal with major problems or emergencies within the organization.
  • Advisors monitor group functioning and encourage members to fully participate, assume appropriate responsibility for group activities, and maintain a balance between academic activities and extra commitments.
  • The advisor must be a link to the University administration and serve the group as a resource person.
  • The voluntary association between an advisor and an organization should continue as long as both parties believe the relationship is productive and mutually satisfying.