Going from high school guidance counselors who students were required to see all the time to academic advisors who we are only encouraged to see, it is not uncommon that many college students don't really go to their advisors. It's true that academic advisors can help you pick out your classes for next semester, but their job goes beyond that. With registration for next semester opening up soon, here are some questions you should prepare for your meeting with your advisor.
1. "What classes should I take outside of my major?"
Yes, classes outside your major are important. College students often get so consumed with their majors that they forget about the incredible options available to them that don't pertain to their major. Academic advisors can aid you in finding a class you will truly enjoy and enhance your college experience.
2. "What direction should I go with my major if I'm interested in _________?"
While you know what you're interested in, sometimes you may not know what to do with your major. Your academic advisor can take your interests and major to find you the perfect path. For example, an advisor can see that you enjoy writing and your major is political science so they would recommend pursuing a job where you would write about politics and current events.
3. "What internships will enhance my resume?"
Your academic advisors have a lot of connections and should be able to guide you to a person or organization where you can intern.
4. "How should I prepare for graduate school?"
Advisors can not only help you plan out what classes you take but also assist you in preparing for your life after your undergrad. They will ensure that you are taking classes that will make your transcript ideal for graduate school as well as inform you on any exams you may have to take.
5. "Can I take summer classes at the local community college and transfer them over?"
For many of you who go home for the summer or attend a private university where the tuition for summer term is extremely expensive, it may be a good idea to take some classes at the local community college and transfer it over. Be sure to ask your advisor about the school's policies about this!
6. "What is my four-year plan?"
Your advisors can provide a game plan for your entire undergraduate career, so be sure to ask for one. This will keep you accountable every semester and allow you to see what you have ahead.
7. "What should my minor be?"
Your academics advisors are pros at finding the perfect major and minor combination. Don't be afraid to ask and see their suggestions! Being honest with your advisor about your interests, weaknesses and strengths will allow them to craft the perfect combination for you.
It is absolutely crucial that you take the initiative to see your academic advisor because they can serve as a mentor and guide for you. While you can easily create a schedule for yourself, your advisor has experience and knowledge that is essential to making sure you are on the right path.
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