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Thursday, September 6, 2007

On the New Seaon of...

I guess it's because I've gotten swept up in the drama that ensues on my newly purchased DVDs of season two of Dynasty. I love a good drama! I love Alexis Carrington! I have season one also and it's not nearly as thrilling as season two - I think anyone who enjoyed this 80's evening soap knows this. What those same people would know is that the drama is always the same - just presented differently in each episode and that's precisely the world of student affairs.

Love it or leave it - our careers in student affairs is dramatic. It's not unusual to hear "She said..." , "He said...", "I can't believe he...", "Did you know..." on campus - from other professionals no less. HA!

I've just started the season of meetings on our campus. I'm in my 5th season of this series. Complex Council, Residence Hall Association, National Residence Hall Honorary, Dining Commons Committee, Committee for the Committee of Forming a Committee, and the "let's meet tomorrow to discuss what was discussed in today's meeting" meetings. It can all be so dramatic and seem so important.

If you've worked with student groups you know how a dramatic turn of events can happen and throw people into a tizzy. This week on As the RHA Turns, I witnessed a dialogue exchange that will undoubtedly morph into a battle between "Krystal" and "Alexis". As the advisor, I'm challenged with managing/directing each episode and I thought, "How do I manage these two personalities and make sure the good of the team is intact?" I mean, we DO have a lot more episodes to do! My first thought was to sit back and watch because as I said earlier.. I LOVE a good drama. Then there's the seasoned student affairs professional in me that says, "You better get a grip on these two!"

Working with students who are trying to figure out who they are, what it really means to be mature, and how to become more professional without compromising their authenticity is tiring! But it's a labor of love.

Each semester presents 16 new episodes. They laugh; they cry; they argue; they threaten to walk out on you; they vow to never talk to someone unless they have to; they plan; they plan to watch things fail; they plan to succeed; they vanish only to return just in time when their help is no longer needed; they work until their help is no longer needed. Our students can, at times, be all these things and more and it's our dedication to them that encourages them to be the stars of the show. It's our job to bring out the talent and natural gifts in our students and help them shine.

So, on with the show and may each of us who advise student organizations strive to be the Aaron Spellings of our campus. Dramatic close-ups, paused stares into the cameras and all!

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