Career Services vs. Academic Advising

Teaching and development.

May 26, 2016
When one leader leaves, your social media efforts need to be maintained

The Student Affairs subreddit has more than 1,000 subscribers and it tends to be quite active. About a month ago, a thread was posted with the title "Career Services vs. Academic Advising." The post came from someone who was looking at an internship in either career services or academic advising. They wanted to know about the job outlook, future growth, need, and pay of each area.

Comments on the thread were fairly balanced with advising (career or academic) being described as a good functional area depending on professional preference.

Having worked as an academic advisor (which often included career development conversations/activities), it was nice to see a comment that mentioned the existence of blended or "hybrid" positions. There can be quite a bit of overlap between academic and career advising.

In what will probably be quite cringe-inducing for most academic advisors, one commenter stated that "Academic Advisors need to worry about computerized systems taking our jobs." Alas, I think that points back to the disconnect that has existed for quite a while with advising structures and technology. An academic advisor who thinks that technology will take their job is probably in need of a professional refresh...technology makes advisors more efficient and amplifies their ability to connect with students. It's important to remember and realize that advising (academic or career) is about teaching and development...it's not a prescriptive activity.

Fortunately for the original poster, either internship opportunity in academic advising or career services will result in professional development that will create, enhance, and build transferable skills that will be useful for future career endeavors.

How would you have advised this student?

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