SKSM’s educational philosophy is carried out through intensive, individual advising by the faculty.  Each student is assigned a primary advisor, although that advisor may change over time.

Advisors are available to students from late August to the end of the Fall term and from mid-January to the end of the Spring term.  They typically do not work on holidays, weekends or after business hours.  Advisors will devote June to administrative duties, research and writing, will be on vacation in July, and will focus on class preparation in the first part of August.

Advisors are expected to:

  • Meet regularly with the student during the academic terms.
  • Offer counsel to the advisee in the planning of their course of study.
  • Be familiar with SKSM policies, procedures and deadlines.
  • Empower student to stretch, risk and be accountable for their learning.
  • Listen and encourage student’s spiritual formation.
  • Work with student on special reading courses and/or suggest other faculty.
  • Consult with student regarding denominational/vocational requirements.
  • Guide student in preparation of a final project (MASC) or MA thesis.
  • Facilitate student’s Portfolio Conference.
  • Present the student’s Petition to Graduate to the faculty.
  • Write letters of reference at the request of the advisee.
  • Model appropriate boundaries in the advising relationship.

Because the advising relationship is mutual, students are expected to:

  • Meet with the advisor regularly during the academic terms.
  • Consult with advisor before registering for courses.
  • Come to meetings prepared, with questions, concerns and ideas to share.
  • Take notes on meetings , including suggestions received from advisor.
  • Respect the schedule and time availability of the advisor.
  • Request meetings at least a week in advance, when possible.
  • Make requests for letters of reference a month in advance, when possible.
  • Contact advisor promptly if they need to cancel or reschedule a meeting.
  • Consult the Student Handbook first when they have questions about SKSM.
  • Turn registration and other forms into advisor in a timely manner.
  • Take responsibility for their actions (or inactions) as a student spiritual leader.
  • Understand and respect the boundaries of this professional relationship.

Expect, too, to enjoy, laugh and cry with your advisor!  They are your witness, caring presence, and guide as you make your way through Starr King and beyond.