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Success Coaches vs. Academic Advisers

By Nicole Curcio
Staff Writer

Academic advisers are commonly available on college campuses throughout the nation. They are meant to lead students to educational, and in some instances, career successes. The majority of students on campus do not have academic advisers; however, they have success coaches.

Success Coaches, located in the Promise Office on the second floor of Hillwood Commons, are offered to undergraduate students upon committing to the school. These coaches follow the standard description of other universities’ academic advisers by helping students schedule their semesters, meet graduation requirements, engage in activities on campus and find off-campus professional opportunities.

Junior criminal justice major and student athlete, Shannon Walter, has a Promise Coach who has been accommodating to her demanding practice and conditioning schedule. “He has helped me find classes that fit in my schedule so that I don’t have to miss practice, conditioning, or anything else,” she said. “Though I only meet with him to do my schedule, he helps me map out whether or not I’m on track to graduate.”

The Promise Program, which began in fall 2013, provides career counseling, assists with enrollment, major selection, scholarships, financial planning, internships, study abroad opportunities, assessment of strengths and helps students become active members of the campus community, according to the Director of LIU Promise, Christopher Salute.

“Your four years at LIU Post should not only be fun and exciting, but reward you with the tools necessary to make the next 40 years just as exciting,” Salute said. “LIU Promise pairs first year and some transfer students with success coaches whose goal is to help students successfully navigate their years at Long Island University equipped with a career choice, major, and extra-curricular activities which will engage them locally and globally.”

Success Coaches act as advisers, yet are not to be confused with the Academic Advisers, who are located on the second floor of Kumble Hall. The Office of Academic Advisers is where most transfer and graduate students are able to find guidance for accomplishing their degrees.

Senior broadcast major, Grace Oshin, was given an academic adviser, not a promise coach, after transferring from Lyndon State College in Vermont. “The original adviser I had when I first transferred to this school was terrible. She didn’t give me enough credits, and she was barely there to help when I needed it,” Oshin said. Fortunately, a new adviser was appointed to her when her original adviser left her position.

“Once I switched to a new adviser last semester, she got me back on track to graduate on time. If I had stayed with the same adviser, I would have been a semester behind.” Oshin said that she will have to take over 23 credits next semester due to the poor advisement of her first adviser.

Although Oshin had a rocky start in the Academic Advising Office, she could not be happier to be in Kumble instead of LIU Promise. “I don’t want someone who is supposed to be there to guide me mess up my schedule. I have had multiple friends in the past complain about that.” Oshin is very grateful for her current adviser’s guidance and efficiency in responding to her emails.

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