by Shellby Branch
On September 14th and 15th, the college advisors came together at the University of Georgia’s student union for two days of training. College advisor Kelsey Albertini finds in-service trainings meaningful because, “[they] help me prepare to advise those students that may need extra support and allow me to gather information and resources to share with my students. Since we are able to do in-service training throughout the year the information is relevant… making it the most efficient way for us to learn about recent changes or additions to anything that affects our advising.”
Training began with a FAFSA workshop by Brenda Vaughn, a K-12 Outreach Representative from the Georgia Student Finance Commission. Brenda explained the changes to this year’s FAFSA and focused on the aspects of the FAFSA that typically confuse students and families. Professionals across UGA also contributed to the training including David Meyers from the Fanning Institute of Leadership Development who discussed supporting youth experiencing homelessnees, Dr. Brandee Appling from the Department of Counseling and Human Development Services who explained how to use an asset-based approach to advising, and Brionna Johnson, a former college adviser and current career consultant who shared her expertise on supporting underdocumented students with their college search.
Outside of learning formally through presentations, another benefit of the college adviser training is that they get to meet with other professionals doing the exact same work as them.
This is one advantage advisor Kasey Carroll noted. “It's nice to receive insight from previous advisers and have discussions with fellow advisers.” Keambria Riggins agreed, stating: “I learned [from a fellow adviser] during training that if a student is registering to take the SAT or ACT during the late registration period, they will not have to pay the late registration fee if they are using a fee waiver.” The combination of learning from experts in the field and colleagues is a crucial part of the event’s success.