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Academic Advising

Our Earth and Atmospheric Science advisor is Chivonne Torres! 

Science Building, Room 2055

If you are just getting started at MSU Denver, begin by making an advising appointment with Chivonne. You may email her, swing by her office during drop-in hours, or make an appointment via the Student Hub under "Get Advising".

Once you are settled in here, we recommend that you visit with an advisor as you pick courses for the next semester. We encourage you to get advising from a professor in your program. You may email them to make an appointment or drop in during their office hours.

Environmental Science: Dr. Shamim Ahsan, Dr. Randi Brazeau, Dr. Andy Evans

Geography: Dr. Antonio Bellisario (Sustainability), Dr. Gabrielle Katz (Physical)

Geology: Dr. Barb Echohawk, Dr. Uwe Kackstaetter

Geospatial Sciences: Dr. Dave Parr, Dr. Stella Todd (Currently on Sabbatical)

Meteorology: Dr. Sam Ng, Dr. Keah Schuenemann, Dr. Rich Wagner

Academic advising is a developmental process that assists students in the clarification of their life/career goals and in the development of meaningful educational plans for the realization of these goals (CAS, 2012).  It is a decision-making process by which students realize their maximum educational potential through communication and information exchanges with an advisor; it is ongoing, multifaceted, and the responsibility of both student and advisor.  The advisor serves as a facilitator of communication, a coordinator of learning experiences through course and career planning and academic progress review, and an agent of referral to other campus agencies as necessary. Higher education administrative professionals, faculty, and graduate students can all serve as advisors (CAS, 2012). According to the National Academic Advising Association (NACADA) (2006), academic advising consists of three components: 1) curriculum (what advising deals with), 2) pedagogy (how advising does what it does), and 3) student learning outcomes (the result of academic advising).  

Expected Learning Outcomes for Advisees

  1. Students will know how and where to seek accurate information and guidance.
  2. Students will know how to contact the appropriate advisor, including how to schedule an appointment.
  3. Students will register independently for classes.
  4. Students will comprehend basic degree requirements, including General Studies.
  5. Students will be able to interpret and run a Curriculum, Advising, and Program Planning (CAPP) report to assist with degree planning.
  6. Students will articulate educational and career goals and align their academic experience with those goals.

As a student, you should:

  • Meet with an advisor at least once per semester.
  • Read your MSU Denver email daily.
  • Take responsibility for making your own academic and career decisions.
  • Seek advice from advisors and faculty; be open to their suggestions. 
  • Be prepared to discuss your goals and educational plans during advising meetings.
  • Have a working knowledge of MSU Denver’s policies, procedures, and campus resources.
  • Review your major/minor requirements via a CAPP report each semester to track your degree progress.
  • Be able to register for courses, including choosing days and times as well as how many courses to take in a semester. 
  • Know the dates and deadlines for registration, including add, drop, and withdraw dates.  
  • Participate in career path development, resume writing workshops, career fairs, practice interviews, and job search services.

Your academic advisors will:

  • Provide timely, accurate, and intentional advising.
  • Honor the unique nature and interests of each student by assisting you in defining your academic, career, and personal goals.
  • Develop a professional relationship with you based on shared responsibility.
  • Foster a culture of independent thinking and global awareness so that you make informed, socially responsible choices.
  • Engage you in a meaningful process of self-reflection and authentic inquiry.
  • Interpret and explain College policies and processes, including General Studies and other degree requirements.
  • Listen carefully and respect questions, concerns, and problems.
  • Help you discover educational and co-curricular opportunities that complement your professional goals.
  • Continue to find ways to improve your advising experience.
  • Present alternatives if roadblocks are encountered.  
  • Be available to answer questions, either in person, via e-mail, or by phone.
  • Document your advising sessions with appropriate online advising tools.
  1. Drop-in advising: Check the EAS Office (SI 2028) for Faculty Office Hours. Consultation is typically available on a first-come, first-served basis. Faculty members typically have Office Hours posted on their door.
  2. Schedule an Appointment: Plan for an appointment to last 30 minutes to one hour; appointments are typically scheduled at least one day in advance.  Come prepared with advising materials from previous advising sessions. 
  3. Email: Use this option when you have a question that requires a short answer or when it is difficult for you to come to campus. When sending an email, use your MSU Denver account, include your full name in the email body as well as your 900 number.  Do not be too casual with your advisor when using e-mail.  Proofread and spell check!  Allow 48 hours for a response, excluding weekends and holidays.
  4. Telephone: Use this option as a last resort and only when you have a quick question that requires a brief answer.  The telephone should NOT be used for questions that seem deceptively simple, but may entail large amounts of information that are best explained in person.  When leaving a voicemail, please leave your name, 900 number, phone number, and your question.  Speak slowly and clearly.  It is best to follow up with and email and allow 48 hours for a response, excluding weekends and holidays.  You may want to use e-mail for a faster response time overall.

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