Newest CAS advisors bring communications backgrounds

The College of Arts and Sciences’ newest fine arts and humanities academic advisors will apply their communication backgrounds to better relate to their students.

Nancy Wilson, left, and Christine Linn are the newest College of Arts and Sciences academic advisors. Both have backgrounds in communications. Photos by Kari Williams

Christine Linn and Nancy Wilson earned undergraduate degrees in communications from McKendree University and Saint Louis University, respectively. They will work with students in speech communication, mass communications, music, theater and dance and philosophy.

Although Wilson brings nearly 10 years of advising experience to SIUE, she said her communications background will help “tremendously.”

“If you don’t communicate well with your students I don’t think there’s a good way to get involved. So definitely learning those skills from that degree has helped me essentially,” Wilson said. “Just dealing with the public, I think you need to know certain things. You need to know how to communicate effectively, definitely be an active listener.”

When she found out she would work with communications students, Wilson said she was happy.

“That’s my forte. I love it,” Wilson said. “Of course I’m not going to persuade every student I meet to be one, but I would say definitely with the communication background, that can open so many doors for so many students… I was ecstatic when I heard that this was one of the majors that I would be getting involved with.”

Linn said she is excited about working with communications students because of her experience in the field through Saint Louis University (SLU), though at SLU she worked with a wider array of disciplines.

“I liked that this was more specific to arts and sciences,” Linn said.

Though she has not met with students individually, Linn said she has shadowed advising sessions and noticed a diversity among students and their situations.

“Some are transferring in, some are new students and almost every person has a different goal in mind,” Linn said. “They might be jazz performance or teaching Spanish, and so they all are so different and interesting and I’m excited to see what kind of issues they’re going to have and helping them figure them out.”

Similarly, Wilson said she is most looking forward to SIUE’s diverse population.

“I enjoy working with students from all walks of the earth, and that is what I’m definitely looking forward to…,” Wilson said. “I’m looking forward to working with a diverse population of students and seeing what personalities and everything that comes with it.”

Wilson said she transitioned into the academic advising profession at the urging of Webster University’s director of academic advising. She earned a master’s degree in marketing from Webster.

Linn began working in McKendree’s admissions office immediately after graduation as an admissions counselor for five years, during which she earned a master’s degree in educational studies. She also spent time at Saint Louis University’s School for Professional Studies and said her experience there with adult students has helped her become better at explaining issues to students and anticipating their needs. After taking time off due to the birth of her son two years ago, Linn said the opportunity at SIUE came up and “she had to pursue it.”

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