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Advisor Responsibilities to the Student Organization

1. Agree to the advisor agreement terms & conditions (sent via e-mail from IC Engage). This needs to be submitted as a part of the re-recognition process (which opens each year in the beginning of August). Organizations need to complete re-recognition every year. This is technically your only requirement as an advisor.

The following responsibilities are more suggestions and tips.

2. Establish a clear understanding between yourself and the organization. Set up a time with the organization to discuss the purpose of the organization. Determine and agree on what the expectations are of each other. Periodically review these expectations and encourage the organization to give you feedback.

3. Attend sponsored training activities. Although many advisors have been an advisor before, new procedures and policies are always developing, so we encourage you to attend any advisor-specific programs.

4. Use IC Engage. Every student organization recognized by OSE has a profile on IC Engage. The presiding officers have access to make changes to the page, upload documents, update the roster, submit funding requests, create forms and more.

5. The advisor should assist the group in developing realistic goals, strategic planning, and training for the academic year. This will contribute to the education and personal development of the students involved. You should also try and encourage all students to participate. Some students fade into the background if not actively encouraged.

6. The advisor should know what the organization is up to. Establish lines of communication. It's up to you and the group to find the best way to keep the flow of information moving smoothly. Tell the organization what information you would like to receive on a regular basis.

7. Review monthly financial reports (if you can) with the organization treasurer. Familiarize yourself with the organization's financial structure, what the organization requests money for and how it's spent.

8. The advisor should be available to organization members. Make sure you're checking in with the organization. Being visible is one key aspect of being an advisor, but even receiving the minutes from the general meeting each month is helpful to stay in the loop. Get to know the executive board members, but also the general members.

9. The advisor should provide continuity within the group and should be familiar with the group’s history and constitution. Read the group's Constitution. Membership turnover in student organizations is high and often the only link with the immediate past is the advisor. The advisor can steer group members clear of mistakes and help them avoid the proverbial reinventing of the wheel but can also assist in times of conflict or tension.

10. Remember that even though as an advisor you plan an integral part of the organization, you're not an active member of the organization. Your role is to coach and guide the organization, let the students make the decisions.

11. Have fun! This should be a positive experience for both you and the students, if the organization is causing you more stress than anything else, reach out to the Office of Student Engagement for assistance.