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University Seminar - Peer Advisor Information Sheet – Fall 2016

Year Experience



Class Meetings

All first-time, full-time freshmen entering the university are required to enroll in University
Seminar in their first trimester of enrollment. As such, the course is a key element in the
University’s mission for the first year experience. That mission is to encourage academic success
and co-curricular engagement by:
 fostering resiliency and courage
 expecting personal responsibility
 embracing a rigorous general education curriculum
 helping students make connections within the Northwest community
 educating students about campus resources
 facilitating the development of a plan for academic success
 promoting diverse growth opportunities and open-mindedness
University Seminar is a one-hour requirement in the general education curriculum. Ellis’s
“Becoming a Master Student” textbook is used as the textbook for the course. Through a series
of academic activities, assignments, and assessments, University Seminar is intended to:
1. Foster an appreciation for the privileges, rights, and responsibilities associated with a
university education
2. Equip students with the learning skills necessary for success
3. Cultivate the ability for students to monitor their own learning and progress
4. Familiarize students with the resources available to support their academic success
5. Encourage students to cultivate a healthy lifestyle
As a Peer Advisor, you will serve as a peer educator and co-instructor working with the faculty or
staff member assigned to the section.
University Seminar meets during Advantage weekend (Aug. 25-28). Peer Advisor responsibilities
are outlined below:
 Thursday, August 25
o Peer Advisor will deliver welcome cards to students in their residence hall
 Friday, August 26
o 8:30-9:30 a.m. – instructor and peer advisor conduct initial meeting with
University Seminar students enrolled in their section
o Peer Advisor will be leading University Seminar students to a number of activities
and programs throughout the rest of the day. Peer Advisors should leave Friday,
August 26 open for Peer Advisor duties.
 Saturday, August 27
o 8:30-10:00 a.m. – peer advisor leads class with focus on Northwest computing,
online platforms, etc. (instructor attendance optional)
o Peer Advisor will be leading University Seminar students to a number of activities
and programs throughout the rest of the day. Peer Advisors should leave
Saturday, August 27 open for Peer Advisor duties.
 Sunday, August 28
o 1:30-2:30 p.m. – instructor and peer advisor meet with University Seminar class
o 2:45 p.m.-4:00 p.m. – instructor and peer advisor attend new student Convocation
with University Seminar class
o Peer Advisor may be needed at other times throughout the day on Sunday, August
University Seminar class meets Tuesday and Thursday for the first four weeks followed by
Tuesday-only class meetings weeks 5-15. Regular class meetings are from 1-1:50 p.m. The full
course scheduled is outlined below.
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Composition of

Peer Advisor

Training and

Participation in
Selection and

8/30 – University Seminar
9/6 - University Seminar
9/13 - University Seminar
9/20 - University Seminar
9/27 - University Seminar
10/4 - University Seminar
10/11 - University Seminar
10/18 - University Seminar
10/25 - University Seminar
11/1 - University Seminar
11/8 - University Seminar
11/15 - University Seminar
11/22 - University Seminar
11/29 - University Seminar
12/6 - University Seminar
N/A – Finals Week

9/1 - University Seminar
9/8 - University Seminar
9/15 – University Seminar
9/22 - University Seminar

N/A – Finals Week

Students will be randomly assigned with an average section size of approximately 20 students.
Approximately 10% of freshmen in the Fall 2016 cohort will be enrolled in one of the themed
sections of University Seminar (leadership development, community engagement, or global
 We look for students who:
o Completed University Seminar (formerly Freshman Seminar) at Northwest Missouri State
o Achieve sophomore standing by Fall 2016
o Are enthusiastic about University Seminar, good role models, and make responsible
o Will be aware of each student’s behavior and error on the side of caution if there is
reason to be concerned about a student’s wellbeing
o Take an active role in their success and will help others to do the same
o Help others understand the benefits and process of connecting with co-curricular
o Are friendly and who can connect with a variety of different people
o Have a strong academic record with an overall GPA of 2.75 or higher
o Are available for all scheduled program activities, including Advantage Weekend
o Promptly respond to communications from University Seminar staff
A one hour overview session to discuss Peer Advisor expectations and complete required
paperwork will be held in mid-April. Peer Advisors will also meet with their instructor for a one
hour planning and development meeting during the month of April. Additionally, select Peer
Advisors must complete required FERPA training by August 1 and be available for training from
9:00 a.m.-4:00 p.m. on Tuesday, August 23. If you live in the residence halls you will need to
arrange “early move in” and either volunteer for CatCREW on Thursday or pay the early move in
Peer Advisors play a key role in Advantage activities and are expected to greet students on
Thursday, August 25 and interact with students throughout the day Friday, August 26, Saturday,
August 27, and Sunday, August 28.
Students selected to serve as a Peer Advisor will be notified by Friday, April 1. Selection will be
based upon responses to the questions in the application form as evaluated by the University
Seminar Director and a University Seminar Instructor. Peer Advisors receive a $400 scholarship
applied to Fall 2016 tuition.
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Complete the online application by visiting:
Save a .pdf copy of your Degree Audit and email it to
The application deadline is 11:59 p.m. on Friday, March 18.
In most cases, Peer Advisor selection will be completed by the end of day on Friday, April 1.

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