Academic advisement now mandatory

Adolfo Flores

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In an effort to expedite the time it takes for a student to graduate, Associated Students approved a resolution that makes academic advisement mandatory for freshmen and transfer students.’

‘Students will graduate faster once they’re explained their four or five year plan,’ said Senator Luis Carbajo, co-author of the resolution. ‘By spending less time at school you’ll also save money.’

Carbajo looked at his own college, engineering and computer science, and found that before mandatory advisement was implemented students were graduating in six years on average.

However required advisement caused most students to graduate in four to five years.
Vice President Nicole Umali proposed an amendment which passed requesting that Academic Advising Reconciliation Committee review the quality of advising from the various colleges.

‘Sometimes freshmen take classes they don’t need so it’s really beneficial for them to have mandatory advisement,’ Umali said.

At-Large Senator Abel Pacheco said he does not see academic advisement directly translating to faster graduation rates, but rather the quality of it. The amendment was a step towards addressing the issue.

‘(The resolution itself) is forgetting the root cause of the problem.’ When I was a freshman, advisement sucked (and) I walked in and walked out in two minutes,’ Pacheco said.

Senator Joshua Foster took issue to the potential hold that students could have.
‘I’m just stressing on mandatory’hellip; the only way to make something mandatory is to put a hold on a students account,’ Foster said. ‘I don’t need another hold on my account.’

The academic affairs committee conducted a campus wide survey of 1,350 students, of those 55.4 percent want academic advisement to be mandatory.

‘I thinks its real good because instead of having people waste time they can get a path they should follow,’ senior sociology major Craig Mosley said.

‘It’s not only going to quicken the graduation rate, but it also prepares students for real life teaching them that you need to have a game plan if you want to succeed,’ he said.

A resolution supporting the Matador Bookstore ‘Book Rental Program’, submitted by the academic affairs committee was approved unanimously.

This comes as a report, issued in August, from the California state auditor found that the cost of college textbooks in the state have risen almost 30 percent in the past four years.
The rental program is already implemented by the campus and could potentially reduce textbook prices by up to 65 percent.

The recommendation encourages faculty to use the program by assigning books that could be used for at least four consecutive years.

‘We just want to show the campus that we’re implementing the book rental program and hope that it is adopted by as many faculty as possible,’ Senator Carbajo said.

Director of Elections Mazen Hafez announced 656 students participated in elections. On Wednesday and Thursday, 360 and 296 students voted, respectively.

This past week Hafez spoke with representatives from other campuses and their electronic elections.

He found that CSU San Marcos uses an internal voting system to conduct their elections while San Francisco State uses a third party provider for their elections.

‘I’m also looking to different alternatives for the spring semester,’ Hafez said. ‘We’re thinking of multiple precincts.’

This would allow for more voting booths because students would vote at their relative college, he said, the challenge for CSUN compared to some other campuses is the population size.

‘CSUN is kind of unique because of sheer size,’ Hafez said. ‘I did find out that no other schools have voter guides.’

FOR THE RECORD: All first-time and second semester freshman already have mandatory advisement, but third-year and transfer students do not, according to Director of Undergraduate Studies Dr. Maureen Rubin.’ Mandatory advisement is not a new university policy, she said.’ Students may obtain advisement during any semester through their Student Service Center/EOP Satellite or major department; more information is at http://www.csun.edu/ugs/advisement.html