Careers in Student Affairs Promoted by OSI

By Annah Freudenburg, Staff Writer

Graduate interns Christina Fritz and Mark Campbell work on OSI plans in the Student Resource Room. Photos by Allison Tinsey.

The Office of Student Involvement (OSI), located in the Hicks Center may be unfamiliar to many students. However, most know of their efforts. Fliers for Zoo After Dark, Wind Down Wednesdays, and Zoo Flicks color campus.

These events and activities are all the products of OSI. The Index spoke with Mark Campbell and Christina Fritz, both Graduate Assistants of the Offices of Student Involvement about the work they do.

The Office of Student Involvement works primarily in student affairs. “Student affairs focuses on active learning, which helps students focus on their own experiences with co-curricular activities,” said Campbell. This would include a student being a member of a club or organization, or being involved in lead- ership opportunities. “Essentially it’s student development outside the classroom,” Fritz embellished.

Student affairs is a very broad field and offers many career paths: “Some of the well known ones are resident directors, area coordinators.” Campbell said, naming a few. “You can work in student activities, such as the office of student involvement, academic advising, career services or career counseling. There’s also a sect of student affairs that has a research component.”

For students interested in pursuing a career in student affairs after undergraduate ism complete, the next step is to apply to a graduate program to earn a masters degree in higher education in student affairs.

“All of the graduate assistants at Kalamazoo College are part of the Higher Education in Student Affairs (HESA) program over at Western Michigan University,” Campbell said.

Western is only one of many schools across the country that offers graduate programs in student affairs. The programs are typically two years in length, but may go longer.

“I never planned on doing students affairs, which is a very common story. No one knows student affairs exists until it happens!” Campbell exclaimed.

OSI has hosted up to 17 events in ten days and has even more planned. “Homecoming is coming up,” Fritz said, “so we’ll have a lot of fun events leading up to that weekend.”

In regards to movies, they have just set up an email account allowing students to send in suggestions for what is to be seen on Channel 22 as well as at Zoo Flicks.

Moreover, there will be new occa- sions for student involvement: “Coming up this fall we have Emerge Into Leadership,” informed Campbell, “which will be for first-year students who want to be involved with leadership.” The applications for this opportunity should be available towards the end of October.