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Advising

Advisors

Melanie Johnson
CLA Academic Advisor 
612-625-2300
810B Social Sciences Building


Njeri Githire
Director of Undergraduate Studies (DUS)
612-625-1687
848 Social Sciences Building

Advising is an important part of your academic experience. A combination of advising from your CLA academic advisor, the director of undergraduate studies, and CLA's career planning offices can help you better explore, plan, and graduate in four years. 

CLA Academic Advisor

Your CLA academic advisor can provide you with the resources and information you will need to identify your strengths and interests, choose a major, be involved on campus, plan for your future, and graduate in a timely manner. Melanie Johnson is the CLA academic advisor for African American & African studies students. Melanie holds hours in the departmental advising office.

Director of Undergraduate Studies

After you declare your major (and/or minor), you will work closely with your departmental advisor as you choose courses, connect you to student groups, and answer questions about study abroad, grad school, and careers related to your major. In addition, you are welcomed and encouraged to consult with the director of undergraduate studies (DUS) and with department faculty of your choice on matters of intellectual interest and practical concerns.

Career Counselor

The career counselors in CLA Career Services will help you explore majors; enhance your learning experience through internships, jobs, service-learning, and other activities; research careers; prepare resumes; and help you prepare for graduate school.

Meet with Your Advisor About

  • African American & African Studies course offerings
  • Major requirements and how to declare
  • Minor requirements and how to declare
  • Transfer credits: determining if courses taken at other schools can apply toward the major/ minor
  • Course planning for your major or minor
  • Liberal education requirements
  • Adding or dropping courses beyond normal registration deadlines
  • Reviewing your progress towards your degree
  • Senior project planning
  • Academic decision-making
  • Academic difficulty
  • Career guidance, including graduate school or employment
  • Special opportunities such as study abroad, internships, scholarships, etc.
  • Any other concerns, so that staff may refer you to the appropriate campus resources

Advisor responsibilities

  • Provide accurate and helpful information about the programs
  • Available to answer your questions
  • Refer you to other resources when necessary
  • Keep advising appointments
  • Maintain confidentiality with your academic and personal information
  • Respect your needs and ambitions

Your responsibilities

  • Maintain frequent contact with your advisor
  • Come prepared for each advising meeting: bring an unofficial copy of your transcript with you, as well as any other information the advisor has requested of you
  • Make appointments in advance (i.e., not at the last minute, demanding to meet immediately)
  • Handle issues and decisions proactively (i.e., not letting things go until they become a problem)
  • Familiarize yourself with the contents of the department handbook, and the University's Undergraduate and/or Graduate catalogues