Tuesday, November 11, 2014

Spotlight - Interview with Justin Gerstenberger, Coordinator of Academic Advising

Justin Gerstenberger

We had the opportunity to sit down virtually with  Justin Gerstenberger at the TWU Pioneer Center for Student Excellence. Justin graciously took time out of his busy schedule to answer a few of our questions so we could get to know him a little better as well as talk about some of the services the Center offers.

Can you tell us a little about yourself and your background? 

I recently assumed the role of Coordinator of Academic Advising at TWU after advising for 8 years at TCU, UNT Health Science Center and UT-Arlington. I’m in the process of completing my Doctorate Degree at TCU in Educational Leadership focused on Higher Education. I did my masters at UNT in Education focusing on Higher Education and my Bachelor’s at UT-Arlington in Interdisciplinary Studies.

What do you do as Coordinator for Academic Advising?  

As the Coordinator of Advising I work with the advisors on professional development and working to help create a common advising experience for students and advisors on our campuses.

Can you tell us more about academic coaching?  

Academic Coaching is a program that is available to assist students with test taking, note taking, and study skills as well as help student learn about the different types of learning styles and the resources available to on campus to help them be successful. Sessions are typically about a half hour to an hour and students can meet with their coach up to 6 times a semester.

What types of services does the Center offer for online students?  

Our academic coaching services are offered to students online. Students can indicate that they are an online student and through the use of technology in the Center we can do academic coaching sessions via skype to allow online students the same experiences as on campus students in regards to academic coaching.

As many of our students know, we like to have fun in Health Studies. We have held themed orientations complete with alter egos such as Mo Solo, Hoda Fett, and Dee Dee Wan Kenobi from our Star Wars orientation. We also had a Mission Impossible orientation with passports and top secret missions. Sometimes we even make up code names for each other.  Who would your alter ego be or what would your code name be?  

I would have to say that my code name would be Sterling, which also happens to be my coffee name. I’m a big fan of the show Archer, which is where the name comes from. But, I would be all about a Star Wars themed orientation or alter ego!

What is your favorite quote and why? 

“I know you think you understand what you thought I said but I’m not sure you realize that what you heard is not what I meant” – Alan Greenspan. This quote sticks out to in our age of technology where we communicate online. It is easy for words and meanings to be misinterpreted through our technology so it is important to be cognizant of the things we say and send online because we never know if the person on the other end is going to interpret it the way that we said it.

Thanks, Justin! We are glad we got a chance to chat with you! 
You might also like:

Spotlight - Interview with Kurt Krause, Coordinator of Experiential Learning at the Pioneer Center for Student Excellence

Spotlight - Interview with Dr. Joshua Adams, Executive Director of the Pioneer Center for Student Excellence 

Guest Post - Turn Your Interview Into an Offer

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