Thursday, September 29, 2011

Member Spotlight: Kathryn Aslan

Hometown:  Walled Lake, Michigan
College(s) Attended:   Michigan State University and Loyola University Chicago
Degree(s) earned:  German (B.A.), Master of Social Work (MSW)

Title:  Associate Academic Advisor- School of Nursing

What are your hobbies? I play the viola and I love to travel
What was your favorite childhood toy? Either my Hungry Hungry Hippos game or the good old Speak & Spell

Member Spotlight: Jarod Gonzalez

Hometown: El Paso, TX
College(s) Attended:  UT at Austin
Degree(s) earned:  B.A in Psychology & M.Ed. In Higher Education Counseling

Title:  Associate Academic Advisor- College of Liberal Arts

What are your hobbies?  Basketball, philosophy, technology, helping others.

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

ACA Advising Expo

On Tuesday, September 27, 2011, ACA held its annual Advising Expo which is set up as a marketplace for students across campus to get information and majors, certificate programs, and resources available to our undergraduate students.  Initially the Excutive Committe was considering postponing the event for this year because a chair for the event had not come forward.  Then, as if on cue, two super-heros emergered from the Executive Committee to volunteer to chair and arrange all the details for Advising Day. 
ACA Advising Expo Co-Chairs:  Kristin Tommey & Jay Guevara

Because of the extreme weather we've experienced this summer and the lateness of securing co-chairs for the event, the only location that could be secured was the Student Activities Center Ballroom. Co-Coordinators Jay Guevara and Kristin Tommey, both from the School of Undergraduate Students Center for Strategic Advising, pulled off an excellent event that gave students, staff and faculty an opportunity to learn about many of the advising and student services available on campus in a 'one-stop-shopping' format. In all, about 100 students made their way through the marketplace.

Some of the best table displays included:

If any of our ACA members has a sincere desire to keep the tradition of this event going, please contact Nathan Vickers, President-Elect, to let him know you are interested in chairing or co-chairing this event in 2012. 

A Look Back in Time
Now, for a look back in time, here are some photos from ACA Advising Day back in 2005, 2003, 1995 and 1994.  Some of you may remember the tag line (and the buttons we wore), "'s not just for registration anymore."

2003 Event Co-Chairs:  Beverly Anderson Hamilton & Megan Connor

Lovelys Powell & Jo Anne Huber wearing the official ACA t-shirt.

Sue Holzaepfel staffing the Math/Physics/Astronomy table.

Araha Dahl, Larry Carver and Liz Hastings representing Liberal Arts.

The ACA Officers from that year - Liz Hastings, Luci San Miguel Latimer, Lovelys Powell, Ann Gleason, Susan Smith present ACA President Renee LoPilato.

Undergraduate Advising Center Coordinator Chris Huston chats with Engineering Advisors Billy Wood, Glenda Groth and Tricia Gore.

Thursday, September 22, 2011

Welcome Address from our ACA President Theresa Thomas

Sharing Our Voice
Good morning, everyone!  Since Powers gets to say his piece this afternoon, I thought it was only fair if I got to say a few words, too.
It’s the first ACA meeting of the year and the start of avery exciting and busy year for me and all of the executive committee officers.  Thanks to all the hard work of the past officers, we have a lot of hard work ahead of us and a lot of meetings to go to.  I’ve already attended an Ed Policy meeting, a Provost’s Council meeting, and a Revision of Student Records Committee meeting.  The other officers will be attending other campus-wide meetings like JAD and CASPA.  And of course, we’ll be giving you updates throughout the year about what we’re talking about in these meetings. 
Continuing issues are things like budget, possible changes in the core curriculum, moving to online grade changes, and who knows what other changes are just on the horizon for us?
One of the biggest things on our plate right now is four-year graduation rates – I think you all got an email from me last week asking for your opinions on this?  By the way, thanks so much to all of you who responded – I got some really great and helpful feedback!  I don’t know about all of you, but it’s a discussion that keeps coming up in our staff meetings, and as advisor accountability continues to be a hot topic, we are tied very closely to the issue, like it or not. 
Within the next few weeks, Advisory Council will be sending out a survey of some sort asking for help with this topic.  I hope that all of you will share your opinions and/or data with us so that we can share it with all of these committees that are asking what we, ACA, think about the four-year graduation rate issue.
That brings me to our theme for this year.  It’s become kind of  a tradition over the years for each executive committee to come up with a theme….last year’s was Building relationships –and, wow, did last year’s group do a fantastic job of building relationships!  Because of the past leadership and volunteerism all over campus from within this amazing organization, ACA really has a seat at the table where we can Share Our Voice with the UT administration.  And that’s our theme for this year – “Sharing Our Voice.”  We are dependent on you, the membership of ACA, to share your voice with us so that we can share it with the campus community.  As an organization, we’ve been waiting a long time for this - our voice matters!
The other officers and I are excited to carry on this new tradition for ACA and are looking forward to the year ahead.   Thank you so much for trusting in us to represent ACA and for giving us the opportunity to give back to such an amazing organization.  And thanks most of all, for sharing your voice!

Theresa C. Thomas
ACA President, 2011-2012

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

September 2011 ACA General Meeting

Sharing Our Voice 

The September 14, 2011 ACA General Meeting, sponsored by the Academic Counselors Association, featured the beginning of the year address from in-coming President Theresa Thomas (Happy Birthday T!),  updates from the Office of the Registrar, a brief presentation from the new Staff Ombuds - Jennifer Sims, and an open call for participation on ACA standing committees.

A BIG thank you to the paying membership of ACA for providing nourishment to attendees (kolachees, fruit, cofffee and water)!

ACA President
Theresa Thomas welcomed everyone and acknowledged the hard work of our members, as well as past and present executives, that has made our organization's voice heard and valued on campus.On that note, Theresa announced the new ACA theme for this year: “Sharing Our Voice.” She spoke about communicating our collective experiences and expertise in order to postiviely affect changes on campus.

Updates from the Office of the Registrar - Brenda Schumann and Dan Knauft
Discussion on One-Time-Exception Drop/Withdrawal, mid-semester deadline change, and on-line grade change form. Please review the minutes from the meeting for detailed information on these topics.

Staff Ombudsperson - Jennifer Sims
Jennifer spoke about her new position as Staff Ombudsperson, where she acts as a resource for staff members to speak confidentially and openly about concerns they have concerning their jobs at the University. Her office reports to the Office of the President
Phone: 512-232-8010

ACA Committee Recruitment
Former chairs spoke about their committee involvement last year to encourage members to join and participate this year. Clipboards were available for members to sign up for different committees at the end of the presentation.

Please take some time to consider how you want to be involved in ACA!  For descriptions of the ACA Standing Committees, please visit the following website:

The contact information for previous committee chairs can be found on the ACA website.  Please do not hesitate to contact the former chair or a current Executive Commitee member for additional information.

Movin' On Up & Movin' Out
Program Chair/Vice President Valeri Nichols-Keller opened up the floor to recognize new ACA members.  Several new members introduced themselves (be on the look-out for profiles of some of our new members), plus even more "old" members updated us on their job changes including a few who are leaving campus. 

Although we can't list all the movement on campus in this blog entry, we did want to wish ACA Luck and Good Wishes to two of our departing members who have given alot to our campus and to ACA by serving as officers:
Ciao to Jeff Hallock - Biomedical Engineering; ACA Historian 2007-2008
 *Hasta la vista to Brad Popiolek - Center for Strategic Advising; ACA Co-Public Relations 2010-2011