Student organization advisors are integral to the success of student leaders, members and the overall organization. Below is information about eligibility, role and resources for advisors.
Any faculty or A&P staff may serve as the primary advisor for a student organization. The primary advisor is listed in the online organization directory and is responsible for completing annual registration renewal requirements. CCS staff, graduate students, alumni, community members or other non-university employees may serve as co-advisors.
Role of the Advisor
Advisors serve as a connection between student organizations and the university. With the exception of key registration requirements, the advisor's role is negotiable with the student organization. A review of, and mutual agreement on, the advisor's role should take place annually between the student organization leaders/ members and the advisor.
Advisor roles fall into three categories - those that are required for the organization's registration, those that may be required based on the actions of the organization and those that are negotiable.
Per the Student Organization Registration Guidelines, advisors are required to:
- Complete advisor training every two years.
- Submit online approval of the organization's registration every year.
- This indicates that the advisor agrees to serve in that role for the coming year, and agrees to the reporting responsibilities within the Campus Safety (Clery) Act.
- Submit online approval of the organization's goals every year.
Based on the organization's activities, advisors may be required to:
- Review and submit online approval for operating and programming funds requests.
- Review and approve reservations of university space and equipment.
In negotiation with the organization, advisors may be asked to:
- Attend organization meetings and events
- Meet individually with organization members
- Facilitate officer transition activities
- Help prepare the organization's budget
- Review and edit organization communications
- Interpret university policies and processes
- Provide historical context for the organization
- Share university information with members
- Mediate inter-personal conflict
For additional guidance negotiating advisor roles, use the Advisor/Student Organization Agreement. This outlines several common areas for conversation to help set expectations for how advisors and student organization leaders can work together effectively.
Risk Management Recommendations
- Advisors are encouraged to upload a signed Indemnification Letter as one way to manage the risk associated with advising a student organization
- Advisors are encouraged not to be listed as a signatory on a student organization bank account
Student Organization Management System
Advisors can access the Student Organziation Management System using their name.# to login. This System allows advisors to view all organization information, submit required approvals (registration, goals, funding requests) and access online recertification training.
For a tutorial about how to access and use the advisor features, please refer to this video.
Advisor Indemnification Letter
Student organization advisors assume some level of risk when agreeing to be the advisor. An indemnification letter template is available for any student organization advisor to officially recognize their role as advisor. The letter should be signed by the advisor's supervisor, printed on university letterhead and uploaded to the Student Organization Management System under "advisor approvals." A copy of the letter should also be kept for your personal records.
Download the Indemnification Letter Template (.docx) here.
Questions? Please check out our FAQ Page.
Interested in Becoming An Advisor?
We are always looking for faculty and staff who are willing to contribute their time and talents to serving as a student organization advisor. If you are interested in serving as an advisor, please email firstname.lastname@example.org with your name, contact information, and the types of organizations you would be interested in working with. Thank you in advance!
Advisor Appreciation Breakfast
All student organization advisors are invited to join us in autumn and spring semesters for an informal breakfast event. This is an opportunity to connect wtih fellow advisors and student organization team staff members, and to share gratitude to the great ongoing work of all student organization advisors. Watch for specific email invitations each semester.