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Letter to the Editor: What has advising done for me?

During my freshman year here at Ohio State, I can remember sitting in my survey class and feeling completely lost in such a large university where I knew no one and barely knew my way back to my dorm. I also remember being encouraged to meet with my academic advisor at least once a semester, something I decided I needed. I first met with my advisor in psychology in autumn 2013. I walked into her office a mess and confused about what I should be doing with my life. After 30 minutes, I walked out feeling calm — almost like I had a handle on what I was currently doing and what my next steps were.

I am now a fourth-year getting ready to graduate in May with a degree in psychology and criminology, and I can’t imagine how this would have turned out had I not had an advisor for each major. My advisors are the reasons I pursued a third area of interest in automotive technology even though it has no relation to my career goals. They also helped me secure my study abroad program and my internships. However, most importantly, they have listened to my constant complaints about the trying life of a 21-year-old … whatever that means. My advisors have never downplayed my concerns and have always encouraged me to take a breath and keep going.

My current advisor in psychology is one of the best humans I know. She has always gone above and beyond to help me in ways that I’m sure are not in her job description. She doesn’t just help me scheduling classes and figure out career options, but she listens to, and takes a genuine interest in, my personal life whenever I need to talk about something.

I have the pleasure of working in the Psychology Undergraduate Advising Office, so I get to see another side of seven advisors. I see how they genuinely care about their students and worry about those who are struggling. I see them struggle through their own rough days and still manage to be there for their advisees 100 percent.

Advisors do a lot of behind-the-scenes work to make sure they are helping students as much as possible. They introduce students to other campus resources and opportunities, as well as help us figure out what we want to do with our lives. Basically, if you have a question, your advisor can answer it or direct you to a resource or person who can.

I am so thankful for my advisors and everything they have helped me with over the past four years. This week is Thank an Advisor Week. If you would like to thank your advisor for something she or he has done for you, please take the time do so at www.go.osu.edu/Thank_an_advisor and consider telling the world using #ThankAnAdvisorOSU. There will also be tables set up around campus where you can send handwritten thank you notes to your advisors.

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