James H. and Christine Turk Berick Center for Student Advising
The James H. and Christine Turk Berick Center for Student Advising (CSA) reflects the mission of the University in striving to support and challenge the intellectual and personal growth of its undergraduate students and by creating a developmental, diverse, and open learning environment. Individually and collaboratively, each advising dean:
- provides individual and group academic advisement, exploration, and counseling
- provides information on preprofessional studies, study abroad, and major declaration and completion, as well as various leadership, career, graduate school, and research opportunities
- designs and facilitates programming to meet the unique developmental needs of each class and to enhance community among students, faculty, and administrators
- interprets and disseminates information regarding University polices, procedures, resources, and programs
- educates and empowers students to take responsibility in making informed decisions
- refers students to additional campus resources
Every undergraduate is assigned an adviser from the Center for Student Advising for the duration of their undergraduate career. When each student matriculates, they are assigned to an advising dean, who specializes in the engineering field the student indicated as his or her first interest on the Columbia application. When a student declares a major, a faculty member is also appointed to advise him or her for the next two years. Depending on their chosen major, students may be assigned to a new advising dean who is a CSA liaison to their department. Advising deans regularly refer students to their academic departments to
receive expert advice about their engineering course selections.
Preprofessional Advising works closely with other staff members of the Center for Student Advising, with faculty in the Arts and Sciences and in SEAS, as well as with the Center for Career Education to provide information for students who plan a career in law or the health professions. The office advises and assists students throughout their four years, but works most closely with
students during their application year and with alumni who apply for admission after graduation. Information sheets, forms, and helpful resources are available from the Preprofessional Advising website. Students will still work with their advising deans as their primary advisers; these advisers will be instrumental in writing committee evaluations for some professional schools.