Academic Success
February 2021 Staff Newsletter

In This Issue:
  • February Staff Feature
  • Educational Resources
  • Unit Updates
Each month in this section of the newsletter, Academic Success will highlight a member of the team who is doing amazing work. If you wish to submit a nomination please fill out the nomination form.
Jordan Brandt (she/her/hers) | Assistant Director, Center for Academic Retention & Engagement
Jordan is the Assistant Director in the newly formed Center for Academic Retention & Engagement. One of her primary roles includes coordinating the Peer Mentoring Program in the center, which prioritizes students of color, first-generation students, and Pell-grant eligible/low-income students. Jordan expanded the program from its original 6-week plan, to a full semester, and is carrying it forward to this spring. It currently serves students during their first two years at KU, but she is hoping to grow the program to include partnerships with KU Faculty and Alumni to support students as they plan for post-graduation. Through the entire process Jordan makes sure to center the most marginalized students and by doing so, her work is beneficial to all students.

Jordan says that the most rewarding part of her position is, "being able to center some of the most historically underserved populations of students in [her] efforts, in a critical and innovative way." She takes time to get to know her students personally, learning about their needs, and encourages feedback. This helps them participate in the planning process for initiatives that are intended to support them. Jordan notes that is great to, "watch them take ownership of their education and be successful personally and professionally."

With the formation of the new center, support for students on the margins will be more centralized. Having everyone come together will encourage more collaboration of ideas and resources in order to better serve students. Jordan is looking forward to continuing and expanding partnerships across campus in order to have the support needed for this work. And as Jordan says, "because they deserve the best that we can give them." 

Fun Fact: Jordan's favorite hobby is lifting weights. She says it is a time she dedicates for just her that allows her to "block out everything and everyone."
Each month this section of the newsletter will highlight articles, webinars, and other resources relevant to staff. We ask that you submit any suggestions you have to the Academic Success email for future newsletters.
Power and Place Symposium: Indigenous Worldviews of Higher Education
For staff planning to attend or considering the 2021 NASPA Virtual Conference, checkout the FREE pre-conference: Power and Place Symposium: Indigenous Worldviews of Higher Education. The two-day pre-conference will explore issues related to orientation, transition, retention, and other topics that impact the participation of Indigenous higher education communities. The Symposium was originally designed as a one-day immersive professional development opportunity at Haskell Indian Nations University (Haskell), one of 37 tribal college and university (TCU) settings in the United States. The Symposium has been reimagined in a virtual format to explore the depths of identities through the education, development, and leadership experiences of Haskell alumni, students, staff, and faculty.

Allyship in Community Engagement & Service Learning
Thank you to the Center for Service Learning for sharing this resource they created on their website. It includes social change strategies, lists of reading materials, social media accounts to follow, films to watch, and more.
Office of First-Year Experience (FYE)
KU Common Book
February 26 | 7:30 p.m.

In partnership with the Hall Center for the Humanities, the Office of First-Year Experience relaunched the KU Common Book program this spring after a brief hiatus due to the pandemic. The Spring 2021 KU Common Book Mini-Experience centers on Tara Westover's Educated. Please help them promote the program by talking about the book with the students you serve and by attending Westover's talk on February 26 at 7:30pm. Here is the link to register for the talk.

Center for Service Learning (CSL)
Educate and Act: Civic Participation for International Students & Scholars
March 2 | 12 p.m.
Join the Center for Service Learning, The Commons, and the Emily Taylor Center for Women and Gender Equity for another installment of our Educate and Act series on March 2 at 12pm. Through presentation and discussion at this session, Global Jayhawks and other attendees will be able to consider how to engage in civic action, even when citizenship status may not offer the opportunity to vote.
Register for “Educate and Act: Civic Participation for International Students & Scholars” and contact the CSL with any questions!

The CSL on YouTube
The CSL is posting recordings from their Summit on Community-Engaged Learning and Scholarship there for those unable to attend.

They have also uploaded their “virtual class visit” video there as well, if you are interested in sharing that with students in your courses, peer advisors, etc.  

Community Service Advocates
The CSL is glad to host three Community Service Advocates meetings this semester! This group is an opportunity for student service leaders to come together and network, build partnerships, and learn from one another on a regular basis. Advocates serve as liaisons between their organization and the CSL. Know a student that might be interested in participating? They can register online.

University Academic Support Centers (UASC)
KU Writing Center (KUWC)
Opening February 8
The KU Writing Center will open for appointments on Monday, February 8. There are limited in-person, physically distanced appointments available as well as virtual sessions. Students can schedule appointments using their online system available on the KUWC website. They have also posted their spring hours online.

Workshops - 1st Session February 16 at 2pm
The KU Writing Center is excited to offer a synchronous workshop series this spring. All information, including Zoom links, is on the KUWC website.

Instructors seeking to support their students’ writing through writing workshops may request asynchronous online workshops through the online request form.

Hiring Consultants 
The KU Writing Center is hiring Graduate Writing Consultants. Interested students can learn more and apply through the HR website.

Academic Learning Center (ALC)
Supplemental Instruction (SI) 
SI Sessions and Office Hours will begin this week on either Wednesday or Thursday, February 10 or 11 (the start of SI will be announced in the respective classes).  Please see the list of classes with SI this semester for more information.

Lindsay accepted a job at the KU Medical Center and is no longer working in the Academic Learning Center. If you have questions about Supplemental Instruction, you may contact Kristin Scott or email

Tutoring Services
The Tutoring Services online system is now open to all KU students.  The request system will remain open until Friday, April 23.
Hiring Tutors
The Academic Learning Center is hiring tutors for Spring 2021 through April 23!  Interested students may
learn more and apply online.
Academic Consultations
If students are interested in scheduling an Academic Consultation with a member of the professional staff, they may email or call  (785) 864-7733  to schedule an appointment. 

You are receiving this newsletter because you are a staff member in Academic Success. If you believe you are receiving this message in error, please contact
Academic Success
1450 Jayhawk Blvd
Strong Hall, Room 156
Lawrence, KS 66045