Advisors Deliver Presentation During Statewide Conference

PCC Student Success Advisors Susan Marsh, Terra Jones, Amelia Bain and Jessica Blake (clockwise, from top left) shared strategies for effectively advising first-year students during a virtual conference last month.

WINTERVILLE—Pitt Community College Student Success Advisors shared best practices with their colleagues from around the state recently as part of the N.C. Community College Advising Association’s First-Year Student Success Conference.

The event, which is held each year to promote dialogue regarding effective community college advising, took place virtually Feb. 22. PCC’s presentation, titled “Powerful Connections through Communication,” featured advisors Amelia Bain, Jessica Blake, Terra Jones and Susan Marsh discussing strategies for providing effective and well-timed communications to first-year Pitt students.

“At PCC, we want first-year students to have a strong foundation for success,” said PCC Director of Admissions and Advising Shakeena White. “Therefore, Student Success Advisors provide personalized support to help them achieve their academic and career goals.”

White said PCC advisors established several groups that focused on creating guidelines for virtual new student orientation, communication and intrusive advising, which compels students to play an active role in making college-related decisions and being personally accountable for them.

“Intrusive advising,” White said, “increases academic motivation and completion, because it allows students to develop caring and supportive relationships with their advisors.”

White said the communication group advisors established came up with program-specific registration forms, supporting documents, and email templates to help them better engage with students.

“Targeted, consistent, and timely messages are proven strategies to help students complete the first year of college, because they ensure students know essential deadlines and resources available to support their success,” she said.

Ensuring first-year students get off to a good start in higher education is crucial to their overall success. White said it allows them to remain on track toward graduation, which keeps them in good standing with financial aid, if they are receiving it, and helps prevent them from getting discouraged by having to repeat coursework.