Amlund and Buck receive Excellence in Advising Awards

University Park, Pa. -- The 2005 Excellence in Advising Awards will be presented to Jeanne T. Amlund and Joyce Buck. The award, established by the Undergraduate Student Government's Academic Assembly, annually honors one full-time faculty member and one full-time professional adviser from any Penn State location who has at least two years of advising experience. The award acknowledges excellence in advising, academic and career guidance, enthusiasm, and assistance to students in decision-making and goal-setting.

Amlund has been the Penn State McKeesport faculty member advising students in the College of Education for more than 20 years. In addition to advising students in the college, she regularly co-advises students in the Division of Undergraduate Studies (DUS) and other students who are considering education as a possible major.

According to Amlund, advising entails much more than just providing information about major requirements, University rules and regulations and planning course schedules. She says she makes herself responsible for providing each of her advisees with the guidance and support they need to have a productive and successful college experience.

Amlund takes a proactive approach to advising, contacting her advisees regularly via email, letters, phone calls and face-to-face contacts throughout the entire year.

"I do not wait for them to contact me. I monitor their progress in meeting their coursework and in meeting major requirements and contact them when there are problems and encourage them when they are doing well," says Amlund. "In the advising literature, this is often called 'intrusive' advising, but I much prefer the more positive proactive label."

Students say she has been an incredible influence on their lives and provides them with the support and good advice they need to succeed academically and otherwise.

As an adviser, Buck says she talks with students at all points of their educations and always tries to focus on each person's humanity and circumstances.

Currently the DUS programs coordinator for the College of Arts and Architecture at University Park, Buck began her advising career Penn State in 1986 in The College of The Liberal Arts. According to Buck, as an adviser, she must remember that students become educated one at a time and that, regardless of her role as adviser, she and her advisees are equal as human beings.

She says that compassion and knowledge of the University are important components for her overall advising philosophy. According to Buck, the hardest times in academic advising are when students need emotional support in the face of personal difficulties.

Students value her dedication and loyalty to them and her profession. Known for always making time for advisees, her students appreciate her willingness to guide them through their time at Penn State and open windows they never realized existed.

"I try to strive to learn about each student, to help solve a problem, to inspire them to persist in becoming educated," says Buck. "I try to share my joy of learning, in experiencing the world, and in spending time with people who are becoming educated while using my knowledge of Penn State and higher education. I try to do for them what I want to be done for my family and me."

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Last Updated November 18, 2010