Military: How to Work With Your Adviser

For military-affiliated undergraduate students, you’ll work with your academic adviser to plan your academic program, stay on track to graduate, choose courses, and manage the impact of deployments, training, and relocations.

Our academic advisers who support military students provided the insight below on how you can work with your adviser to create your plan to succeed in school.

Your Leadership: Your Adviser

Think of your military academic adviser as your unit leadership; they are here to lead you to your next step. Just as your leadership could help you work toward a promotion and integrate with the unit, your military adviser can help you reach your education goals at Penn State World Campus and integrate into college culture. When you joined the military, you had to adjust to a new system, schedule, and way of doing things, from how you talked to people to how you managed your free time. Attending a university for the first time can be similar.

Action steps: 

Be Proactive & Communicate. Maintain open and regular communication and schedule regular meetings with your academic adviser. Share information about your military commitments, deployments, and any other factors that might affect your academic schedule. You can make an appointment with your adviser in Starfish.

Understand Academic Policies. Familiarize yourself with the academic policies and procedures of the institution. This includes deadlines for registration, drop/add periods, and any specific policies related to military service obligations. Your adviser is a valuable resource in understanding University Policies & Procedures.

Why You’re Here

Starting to take courses through Penn State World Campus is also similar to going to technical training for the first time. You will need to get acclimated to the environment, course work, and instructors. It’s important to stay focused on your goals and why you’ve chosen to earn your degree. Whether you want to get a civilian position after your military service is over, or if you’ve left the military and want to advance in your current career, maintaining a keen eye on your goals will help you start and finish strong. While Penn State course work can be rigorous, remember that you’re earning a respected credential you can be proud of.

Action step: 

Stay Informed about Benefits and Resources. This could include tutoring services, mental health resources, career services, networking opportunities with other military-affiliated students, and any specific resources provided by the University for military-affiliated students.

Complete the Mission

Active-duty and veteran students are often familiar with having a mission or a plan to complete in their military career. Similarly, military advisers are there to help you create your plan to become a proud Penn State alum. They can steer you toward resources to help you complete your plan and serve as your liaison with other offices at the University. Helping you complete your educational mission is their goal.

Action step:

Create a Long-Term Academic Plan. Work with your academic adviser to create an academic plan that accommodates your military commitments. This can help you stay on track to meet your academic goals while considering potential military-related interruptions.

Your military academic adviser is here to guide your transition from service member or veteran to student. We’re proud to provide knowledgeable advisers who often have military experience or connections of their own, and who enjoy serving military-affiliated students.

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