Faculty Advisor Resources

Faculty Advisor Resources

This page is a resource for all Faculty Advisors at Trocaire College. It contains information about the advisement process, college academic policies and procedures, and available student services. Links to commonly used advisement materials and forms are centrally organized for your convenience.

What is Academic Advising?

Academic advising is a collaborative relationship between a student and an academic advisor. It is a developmental process in which advisors assists students in the clarification of their life and career goals and in the development of educational plans for the realization of these goals.  Academic advising utilizes the resources of the college and refers students to the appropriate academic support services. Ultimately, academic advising is a decision-making process in which the sharing of information between student and advisor promotes responsible and appropriate choices and facilitates a successful academic experience.

Case management is a solution-focused approach to assisting students with a wide variety of needs. It is a collaborative process that assesses, plans, implements, coordinates, monitors, and evaluates the options and services required to meet the many academic and personal demands our students face every day. Case management is characterized by advocacy, communication, and resource management and promotes quality interventions and outcomes. As such, Student Service Advisors are concerned about what is and what can be done, rather than a focus on what was and what has held back the student in the past.

Case management, at its very core, is about helping students to overcome the obstacles they encounter in their lives. Student Service Advisors guide students from the time of their acceptance to the college through graduation by providing personalized service and comprehensive resources designed to ensure student success in all phases of academic, career and personal development. This is central to Trocaire College’s 2020 Strategic Plan, which seeks to retain students and provide them with an environment conducive to student success.

  1. Help students clarify their values and goals.
  2. Provide accurate information about educational options, requirements, policies, and procedures.
  3. Plan an educational program consistent with a student’s interests and abilities.
  4. Assist students in the continual monitoring and evaluation of their educational progress.
  5. Integrate the many resources of the institution and/or in the community to meet the student’s educational and personal needs.
  6. Prepare students to transition to faculty advisors in their academic programs.

All students who are new (freshmen and transfers) to Trocaire College each semester (excluding BSN, ECHO, and DMS students), and those who are readmitted after being away from the college for more than one year. These students receive comprehensive case management and academic advisement from their assigned Student Service Advisor for two semesters before being reassigned to a faculty advisor in year two. Students who are completing 1-year certificate programs will be reassigned to a faculty advisor after the completion of their first semester.

Additionally, the Student Service Advisors are available to support and assist all students assigned to faculty advisors who are struggling with peripheral issues such as transportation, childcare, etc.  Faculty advisors should refer their advisees to see the Student Service Advisor assigned to them based on the student’s last name as follows:

Challis Cooks: A—F

Michelle Semski: G—N

Peg Babcock: O—Z

Faculty members advise students as an important component of their teaching responsibilities. By serving as advisors, faculty provide effective guidance so students can maximize their educational opportunities and make critical decisions regarding their education, career, and life goals. The faculty advisor serves as an integral role in fostering the student’s academic and intellectual engagement as well as promoting the student’s professional/career growth and connection.

Faculty advisors are assigned to the following students:

  • All students in degree programs who have completed two semesters at the college.
  • All students in certificate programs who have completed one semester at the college.
  • All BSN, ECHO, and DMS students

All full-time Trocaire College faculty are responsible for advising students each semester. Full time faculty are required to have three (3) office hours weekly during which they are available for individual conferences and advisement. (Collective Bargaining Agreement, Article XIX, Section E).  Newly hired faculty are not assigned advisees until they complete one full semester at the college and participate in New Faculty Advisor training.  The Director of the Advisement & Student Service Center is responsible for assigning student advisees to faculty advisors each semester. Finalized advisee lists will be provided to faculty advisors each semester following the add/drop deadline.

All faculty advisors are expected to:

  • Contact every one of their new advisees within the first four weeks of each semester for introductions.  Advisors may use email, phone or face-to-face meetings – whichever means works best for the advisor and the student.
  • Meet with all advisees in October for spring registration advisement and in March for summer/fall registration advisement. Meetings may take place via phone, video chat, or email if the student and advisor cannot schedule an in person meeting due to schedule conflicts. Document all meeting notes in the Advisement Dashboard.
  • Discuss students’ career and personal goals and specific interest in the major.
  • Provide students with an understanding of the major discipline, its options, and how they intersect with the students’ interests and goals.
  • Discuss the student’s plan for success for the semester and potential for progressing to the next semester in good standing (use online GPA calculator if necessary).
  • Offer an alternate major suggestion if a student is having difficulty reaching the goals for the chosen major.   All program admission requirements are available on the Trocaire College website for each major.
  • Meet with advisees on academic probation early in the semester to help them identify the issues and situations contributing to their academic difficulty. Refer them to the Palisano Learning Center to meet with an academic coach to develop a plan for success for the semester.
  • Document important details of each student meeting in the Advisement Notes section of the Advisement Dashboard in the eFaculty portal.
  • Follow up with all Academic Alerts and Midterm Warning notices that their assigned advisees receive via email or phone – students need to receive a communication from their advisor regarding these notifications to find out: What has the student done in response to the Alert?  Is it possible to be successful in this class or is it better to withdraw?   What is preventing the student from being successful?  Please be sure to record all contacts for academic reasons in your advisor notes.
  • Refer students to the Palisano Learning Center for Tutoring and Academic Coaching. Both face-to-face and online tutoring is available. Students must Request a Tutor online to arrange tutoring services. Online tutoring is available through the “24/7” link on the student’s Moodle homepage.
  • Unlock/enable advisees for on-line registration following the advisement appointment.

Trocaire students are expected to:

  • Meet or speak with their new advisor within the first four weeks of each semester for introductions.
  • Meet with their faculty advisor each semester (October/March) to discuss course registration for the next semester and to be unlocked/enabled for on-line registration.
  • Come prepared to their advisement meeting with questions or material for discussion, i.e., course selections, degree audit, etc.
  • Respond to all advisor communications including Academic Alerts and Mid-Term Warnings.
  • Clarify their personal values and goals and provide their advisor with accurate information regarding their interests and goals.
  • Acquire the skills needed to assume final responsibility for course scheduling, program planning, and the successful completion of all graduation requirements.
  • Be an active learner and gather all relevant decision-making information as suggested by their advisor and course instructors.
  • Read their Trocaire.edu email regularly and use the eStudent portal to access important college resources.
  • Ask questions if they do not understand an issue or have a specific concern.
  • Accept responsibility for their decisions.

FERPA, the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act of 1974, as amended, is the federal law that governs the release of educational records and access to those records for all educational institutions. Educational records include midterm grades, disciplinary proceedings, and college directory information.

As such, advisors are not to release any information pertaining to student educational records to family members, guardians, or friends unless the student has authorized the release of information to the specific individual on a FERPA waiver. The Registrar’s Office records all FERPA waiver information in CAMS. Advisors should contact the Registrar’s Office for this information before discussing student information with any interested individuals.

Advisors are responsible for unlocking/enabling students for the next semester’s registration period after advising students on course selection. To unlock/enable students for registration in eFaculty:

  1. Change the term to the appropriate registration term in the top left corner
  2. Select Enable/Disable Registration from Registration menu
  3. A list of current and former advisees will appear. Enable only those that have your name listed as the current advisor.
  4. Uncheck the box in the Registration Disabled column and Save.

Faculty advisors can also see if a student was enabled by a staff member in the Advisement & Student Service Center in the far right column. Please do not enable students with whom you have not met.

To promote a culture committed to personal enrichment and service in the spirit of the Sisters of Mercy and in keeping with the mission, values, and tradition of Trocaire College, students in all programs (Certificate, Associate, Baccalaureate) must complete at least one  MAP learning experience prior to completing their program in order to be eligible to graduate. MAP is a tuition-free, non-credit, value-added, co-curricular learning experience. MAP provides service opportunities that integrate the College’s mission through an action-reflection approach that connects service to a student’s career path.

All advisors are responsible for advising students about the MAP requirement and helping them to identify an appropriate semester to enroll in the course. Students must register for the MAP 100 section that corresponds with their major. MAP 100 if offered each fall, spring, and summer semester. Questions about the MAP program should be directed to the Office of Community Based Learning located in room 140 on the Choate campus.

Students experiencing academic difficulty and those on academic probation are often those most in need of careful advising; however, they are also the students least likely to seek out their advisors, or to follow through on the advice provided to them. Challenges aside, many advisors find that helping these students succeed can be the most rewarding advising experience.

Many students facing academic difficulty lack specific skills such as time management, proper study habits, or self-discipline. They are usually reluctant to seek help, and do not know what resources are available to assist them. However, if they are willing to make a commitment to change old habits and learn new skills, they can learn the strategies that are needed to be successful academically.

Advisors play a critical role by offering their assistance to these students. Additionally, the Palisano Learning Center specifically outreaches to students on academic probation to provide an additional level of support. Advisors should feel comfortable referring students to the Advisement & Student Service Center and/or the Palisano Learning Center for questions regarding their status, or the resources available to assist them.

Additionally, faculty concerned about the overall well-being of a student can submit a Student Concern Form located on the Student Affairs web page. The matter will be assigned to the appropriate student affairs staff member for immediate follow-up. In addition, the Wellness Center is also a good resource for students in distress who need to speak with a personal counselor.

When working with students on academic probation, please encourage them to do the following to help improve their academic standing at the college:

  • Seek additional advisement. Students typically register for their next semester before they know they are on academic probation. After final grades are posted, they may need to adjust next semester’s schedule. Students should meet with their faculty advisor or an advisor in the Advisement & Student Service Center for assistance.
  • Be honest about their progress in courses. If something is not going well they should discuss it with their advisor ASAP to decide the best course of action. Advisors cannot properly assist students if they are not properly informed of the situation.
  • Utilize tutoring services early and often. Students should not wait until they are failing to seek assistance. Being proactive is the smart thing to do!
  • Be truthful with their instructors about utilizing tutors. Do not tell them they have been working with a tutor if they have not.
  • Be sure to meet regularly with the Academic Coach in the Palisano Learning Center.
  • Take advantage of academic success workshops offered by the Palisano Learning Center.
  • Get to know their instructors. Faculty are their number one resource for information and assistance in their particular courses. Stay after class to introduce themselves, ask questions and visit during office hours to go over course content.
  • Evaluate their strengths and weaknesses. Knowing themselves and what they need to work on is half the battle. Seek assistance with improving those particular challenges right away.
  • Reward themselves for getting favorable grades, making improvements, and completing “to-do” lists.
  • Break large projects and papers down into sections to help with time management
  • Work ahead. If they have a light week, look at their schedule to identify work and reading they can accomplish ahead of time. This will help alleviate stress during busy weeks.
  • Set goals and outline how they will achieve them. Having clearly defined goals will help them focus on what they need to do.
  • Ask questions and ask for help! There are no stupid questions and there is no shame in asking for help when needed. Many people at Trocaire want to help our students be successful.

Faculty advisors are responsible for assisting students with the following actions and procedures as needed:

Instructors are to submit Academic Alerts for students in their courses when there is concern over their performance and success in the course. When submitted, the student and the advisor are notified via email. Advisors are expected to follow-up with the student and encourage the use appropriate resources to improve their chance of completing the course successfully.

Instructors are to submit midterm grades for all students who earn a grade of C- or lower at mid-semester to prompt a warning email to the student and their advisor. Midterm Warnings typically are sent about a week before the withdrawal deadline so the student can make an educated decision to complete the course or withdraw. After discussing their academic standing with their course instructor, students should meet with their advisor to talk through the situation and evaluate any consequences of the decision either to complete the course or to withdraw.

Any student requesting to withdraw from a course, an academic program, or the college must discuss the decision and potential consequences of the withdrawal with their faculty advisor. Students should first discuss possible course withdrawals with the course instructor. The student will then meet with a Student Service Advisor in the Advisement & Student Service Center to complete the Official Withdrawal Form. Students must also meet with their financial aid counselor to discuss any impact the withdrawal may have on their future financial aid eligibility.

Students who know they will not enroll for the next semester but plan to return the following semester are encouraged to fill out a Leave of Absence form to maintain their student status at the college for their return semester. This form is to be signed by an advisor and then sent to Academic Affairs. The information is useful for contacting students when registration opens for the next semester.

Students are to submit a Program Transfer form to their intended department the semester before they expect to start the program. The advisor is to fill in the back side of the form with previous academic history provided in the Advisement Dashboard. The student fills in their information on the form before submitting to the desired program. All RT Program Transfers are to be sent to the Admissions Office.

Most program decisions are made after the semester ends once final grades are posted. Students receive program acceptance emails and letters indicating the steps they need to take to register for their program specific courses. Registration assistance may be obtained by a scheduled or walk-in appointment with a Student Service Advisor. Students will register for their courses via the online registration system.

Depending on the type of financial aid students receive, some students must maintain full-time status (minimum of 12 credit hours) each semester in order to receive their full financial aid award. At times, this is not possible for students who do not have enough courses remaining in their academic programs. Students in this situation may complete a Change in Status form to add a General Studies dual degree that will allow them to take additional Liberal Arts courses each semester to attain full time status. Forms are to be submitted to the Registrar’s Office for processing

  • Ends one week after the start of the semester
    • The second Monday of the semester if the semester begins on a Monday
    • The second Tuesday of the semester if the semester begins on a Tuesday
  • Students add and drop open courses via the on-line registration system
  • New students must meet with a Student Service Advisor for assistance with add/drop
  • Students who receive instructor permission to add a closed course must work with the Registrar’s Office to add the course.
  • The Withdrawal period immediately follows the add/drop deadline.
  • The weeks following the Add & Drop Period through the last day of the tenth week constitute the withdrawal period (W).
  • It is the responsibility of the student to meet with his/her advisor to discuss the consequences of withdrawing from any course.
  • Withdrawal Forms are to be completed with a Student Service Advisor in the Advisement & Student Service Center.
  • Official withdrawal forms must be processed through the Registrar’s Office and also require a signature from the Financial Aid Office.
  • Students who wish to withdraw from a course that has a co-requisite requirement, i.e., BIO 130 and BIO 130 lab, must also withdraw from the co-requisite course even if the student has been successful in the course throughout the semester. Both courses must be included on the Withdrawal Form.
  • A grade of “W” counts as an attempt at taking the course, which may affect the number of times the student, can repeat the course.
  • If a student withdraws after the tenth week, he/she receives a withdrawal failing grade (WF), except in extenuating circumstances.
  • A student who ceases to attend classes and does not formally notify the college in writing will receive a grade of “FX” in the course.
  • In addition to receiving a grade of “FX” students with unexcused absences equal to twice the number of times a course meets per week may be denied further admission to class by the instructor.
  • In each case, the student will be liable for full tuition and fees as originally incurred.  Non-attendance will not release the student from financial liability.

A student who wishes to withdraw from an academic program but remain in the college should contact his/her advisor and the Director of the Program. A student withdrawing from a program may apply to another program.

In order to withdraw from the college, a student must contact an advisor in the Advisement & Student Service Center and complete an official Withdrawal form. The date of official withdrawal from the college is the date on which the form is completed. Official withdrawal forms must be processed through the Registrar’s Office. The student’s financial status will be reviewed during the withdrawal process. The college reserves the right to request the withdrawal of any student whose academic work is unsatisfactory or conduct not in accord with the spirit and aims of the college.

  • A student in good academic standing, with a GPA of 2.0 or higher, who wishes to take a Leave of Absence must request this in writing by completing the Leave of Absence form.
  • In any calendar year, a student may be granted no more than one leave, and ordinarily it may not extend beyond one full semester.
  • A student who does not return at the end of a Leave of Absence will be considered withdrawn from the college. This withdrawal will be effective as of the beginning date of the Leave of Absence.
  • Except for serious reasons, a Leave of Absence will not be granted after Add & Drop day in each semester.
  • Students granted a Leave of Absence for medical reasons must have a doctor’s release to return to the college.
  • Students may repeat a course in instances where they have received grades of C-; D+; D; F; FX; W; WF; and U when a program’s policy requires a minimum grade of C.
  • A grade of W in any course counts as an attempt at taking a course but does not count as a failure.
  • Students will be allowed to repeat a course for which they have received a grade of W only once.  Students may repeat a course only once, unless they have a signed authorization from the director of the academic program in which they are enrolled to repeat a course for the second time.
  • In cases of repeated courses, the last grade earned is used in computing the grade point average (GPA). However, all grades earned for courses taken at Trocaire remain part of the student’s permanent record.
  • If a student chooses to repeat a course that he/she has passed but want to improve the grade, the credits for the repeated course cannot be included in determining a student’s full-time status for the purpose of awarding New York State TAP.
  • Students may not take a Directed Study, Independent Study, or Challenge Exam to replace a course in which a failing grade was earned.

An Incomplete grade is given only for a good and sufficient reason as determined by the instructor. It is completed in a manner determined by mutual agreement of student and instructor. An Incomplete must be removed from the student’s record within 30 calendar days after the Incomplete was received, or it will automatically convert to an F. The 30-day completion requirement can be waived, under extenuating circumstances, with written permission of the Chief Academic Officer.

A student is in good academic standing if he/she is matriculated at this institution and is considered by the faculty to be making satisfactory progress toward a degree or certificate.

Academic probation results when a student’s semester grade point average (GPA) falls below 2.0. A student placed on academic probation is expected to meet with the Academic Coach in the Palisano Learning Center to discuss the student’s academic progress. The student should make this appointment as soon as possible.

Academic dismissal from the College and loss of matriculation results from any of the following:

  • Falling below the cumulative grade point average indicated for dismissal on the chart below.
  • Failing (F or FX) three (3) or more courses in a single semester.
  • Showing withdrawal (W or WF) from more than one half of courses attempted in two consecutive semesters not counting summer.
  • Being placed on academic probation for two consecutive semesters not counting summer.
Total Credits Attempted DISMISSAL Cumulative GPA Below
6 – 15 1.00
16 – 30 1.25
31 – 45 1.50
46+ 1.75

Dismissed students may not re-apply to the College for readmission for a period of one (1) calendar year. Any extenuating circumstances will be reviewed by the Chief Academic Officer upon request by the student.

Dedicated professionals are available on campus to assist students in all aspects of their academic, career, physical, and spiritual development. Each student service department provides services to students upon request. Advisors should refer students to the following student service departments as needed.

The Palisano Learning Center (PLC) offers academic support to all enrolled students free of charge. Through the PLC, students can access individual, group, and online tutoring in a myriad of course areas. For students seeking specialized skill development, academic mentors are available upon request. In addition, the PLC offers workshops each semester on a variety of topics including time management, test-taking and note-taking strategies, learning styles, and more.  The PLC houses a staffed Health Sciences Lab complete with nursing and health science related resources including anatomical models for student use. The PLC is located in room 113 on the Choate Campus.

The Career Services office provides comprehensive career exploration and preparation services for Trocaire College students and alumni. Assistance is available in the following areas: assessing career direction and career options; full and part-time job search; creating resumes and cover letters; and practicing job interview skills. Additionally, Career Services hosts several opportunities for students to meet directly with employers each semester. All students are encouraged to register with Trocaire Connect to access job postings and to visit the Career Services website to get 24/7 career advice.

The Career Services office is located in room 122 on the Choate campus.

The Wellness Center offers comprehensive services and programming to promote student success and healthy lifestyle choices. Counseling Services, Health Records, Accessibility Services, and wellness programming are functionalities under the auspices of the Wellness Center.  In an effort to sustain healthy living, services and programming are offered year round. Students may also visit the Wellness Center for resources related to physical and emotional wellbeing, as well as being referred to community-based organizations who can assist them.  The Wellness Center is located in room 118 on the Choate campus.

The Student Engagement/Student Life Office provides students with the opportunity for co-curricular involvement in an inclusive, student-centered environment. Whether students are seeking involvement in student government, programming, clubs/organizations, or participating in the many activities and events offered, Student Engagement/Life provides access and opportunity for all students.  In addition, student’s professional skills are enriched through leadership and multicultural & inclusion workshops in order to ensure success after completion of their educational journey at Trocaire.  Veteran students are supported through specialized programming at Trocaire. From Orientation to Commencement, Student Life supports student success.

The office of Mission, Ministry & Service exists to serve and advance the mission of the college on all levels of institutional life.

  • On the administrative level by orienting students and staff to our mission as a Catholic and Mercy institution and by helping to craft and implement policies that align with our values and support students as they aspire to careers of achievement and lives of purpose.
  • On the ministerial level by designing programs that promote the education and development of the whole person (mind, body, spirit).
  • Through active engagement with the surrounding community via volunteer and service learning projects that enrich student learning while serving the common good.

In addition, the Office of Mission, Ministry & Service coordinates the Sister Sally Walz, RSM  Student Emergency Fund  to assist students who are working towards success, but have an urgent financial need that is a keeping them from reaching their goals. The office is located in room 112 on the Choate campus.

The Office of Community-Based Learning coordinates the Mercy Action Project (MAP)  and the Professional Mentorship Program. MAP is a graduation requirement for all students and provides service opportunities that integrate the College’s mission through an action-reflection approach that connects service to a student’s career path.   The Professional Mentorship Program pair’s students with working professionals in order prepare students for their intended careers. The office is located in room 140 on the Choate campus.