Advisors are an integral part of every student organization as they provide organizations with an additional resource intended to support them. Often times, Advisors are unsure about the requirements to be an advisor, the time commitment, or the duties required. It is also common for advisors to have questions about policies, guidelines, and regulations related to student organizations. This page is designed to address some of those questions, or at least set you in the right direction.
Who can be an Advisor?
Any .75 FTE University of Missouri-Columbia faculty or staff member can be an organization advisor. If you are unsure of about FTE eligibility, the Organization Resource Group uses the benchmark of benefit eligibility to determine if a faculty or staff member could be an advisor.
If you are interested in serving as an advisor, please fill out the form. The Organization Resource Group will use the information collected to help align perspective advisors and potential student organizations with similar interests and needs.
In order to maintain recognition, recognized student organizations must complete requirements set forth by the Office of Student Organizations and the Organization Resource Group each academic year. The two current annual requirements are Registration and Annual Training. Advisors play a critical role in helping student organizations satisfy these requirements. In addition to annual requirements, student organization advisors also have a responsibility in counseling the student organization they serve. This responsibility can vary depending on the student organization the advisor serves. We have outlined some advisement opportunities below. The Organization Resource Group suggests that all advisors have a discussion with the student organization’s leadership to discuss the role and expectations of the advisor.
Organizations must submit a registration request every year on Engage, an online engagement tool used by the Organization Resource Group to manage student organizations. The registration request helps the ORG Office maintain current information, and efficiently monitor the large number of student organizations on campus. Organization officers should start the process on Engage, however, the request is not complete until it is verified by the organization’s advisor.
**This must be done once an academic year, even if no changes have occurred in the organization’s leadership. Registrations reset on July 1st, and must be updated after that for the next academic year.
How are advisors involved?
Verify the information is correct and then finalize the submission.
Student organization leadership must attend annual Administrative and Finance Trainings that will educate them on student organization policies, guidelines, budget procedures and resources available to them.
The Administrative training covers Engage usage, University and Organization Resource Group policies and regulations. It also goes over multiple aspects of running a student organization on campus, including overview of campus resources provided by the Organization Resource Group and other campus offices, maintaining recognition and how student organization can do space reservations.
Finance Training provides student organization leadership an in-depth view into how to do budget requests through the Organization Resource Group and explains the various types of funds available to student organizations. In order to be eligible to apply for funds through the Organization Resource Group, student organization presidents or treasurers must attend Finance Training.
Trainings are held during the first week of the academic year, and additional trainings are scheduled throughout the year. The Engage calendar will contain all training dates as they are scheduled. Remind students to bring a student ID!
**Student organizations must attend training each academic year, even if no changes have occurred in the organization’s officers. Training is valid for one academic year, and resets on July 1st.
How are advisors involved?
Inform new leadership about training opportunities or remind existing officers about the annual training requirement.
The Campus Security Authority Training helps individuals understand the Clery Act and their roles and responsibilities as a Campus Security Authority (or CSA) in reporting Clery Act crimes.
How are advisors involved?
As an advisor to a Recognized Student Organization at the University of Missouri you are considered by the Department of Education and the Clery Act as Campus Security Authorities. As a CSA you are required to complete online training.
- The training is a total of 1.5 hours.
- The training does not have to be completed in one session.
- The training is organized in modules which are timed.
- Most modules are around 10 minutes long.
- Once a module has been started it must be completed.
- There is a pause option in each module but should be kept at 5 minutes or less.
- You may exit out of the training in between modules and your progress is saved.
- At the end there is a short quiz. A score of 80% is required.
- There are three chances to score an 80%.
- Failure to score 80% after the third try and you must contact the MU Clery Coordinator to have the training reset to the beginning.
To complete the training, please contact the MU Clery Coordinator: firstname.lastname@example.org
There are many challenges and rewards associated with advising student organizations. Student organization leaders and members will often look to you for advise on a variety of subjects. It is ultimately up to the advisor and the organization leadership to determine the advisor’s role within the organization. We recommend having a conversation at the beginning of every new term to outline the expectations between advisors and student leaders. Common areas in which advisors become involved include:
- Helping students understand University policies and the Guidelines for Recognized Student Organizations
- Assisting organization officers with event planning
- Transitioning new officers every year. View a helpful guide in transitioning officers.
- Suggesting amendments to the organization constitution
- Approve travel plans made by organization officers
- Facilitating communication with other University faculty or staff members
- Identifying new possibilities for group activities or fundraising
This list is by no means exhaustive, however serves as an example of the many ways advisors can be involved. There is also an additional checklist provided by the Organization Resource Group.
If you have any questions about your role as an advisor, please do not hesitate to contact the Organization Resource Group, we’d be more than happy to assist you. Contact us.