College of Education's Office of Student Academic Services receives award

University of Hawaiʻi at Mānoa
Jennifer L. Parks, (808) 956-0416
Communications Coordinator, College of Education
Posted: Jun 6, 2011

The University of Hawai‘i at Mānoa College of Education’s Office of Student Academic Services (OSAS) was awarded the first ever Academic Advising Unit Award for Excellence and Innovation by the UH Mānoa Council of Academic Advising in the Office of the Vice Chancellor for Academic Affairs. The new academic advising award will be awarded annually.   
OSAS was selected by a committee of peers for its leadership and innovation in working with students. The criteria for this new award are based on National Academic Advising Association standards and are aligned with the University’s goals. Along with the recognition, OSAS received a $2,000 monetary award.
“OSAS is so pleased to receive this award,” said OSAS Director Melvin Spencer. “We have indeed transformed into an advising unit for the future and are leading the way for other student services offices across the UH system who seek our advice. We hope to invest the award money in technology to help us further improve our services.”
Despite reduced staffing and increased responsibilities over the past several years, OSAS has implemented a number of innovative changes and actively engaged in professional development to improve services to students, infrastructure, and production.
Some of these improvements include the integration of technology, such as Skype and Facebook, to enhance advising services; the increase of non-traditional opportunities for student advising via evening, weekend, and “satellite” appointments; the implementation of the Student Information System (SIS) online database that stores student information ; the establishment of the OSAS Wiki site which provides online access to all advising materials; the initiation of an online COE application process; the active involvement of OSAS advisors with the National Academic Advising Association (NACADA); and the active participation of OSAS in the Mānoa Peer Advisor Program as well as other committees outside of the college.
As a result of their efforts, Spencer and several OSAS advisors have received numerous awards. OSAS continues to evolve to create inventive ways to meet the fullest potential of its mission and goals.