AACUSS members enjoy the opportunity to join divisions. AACUSS divisions communicate through list serves and often have regional meet-ups. The first step to getting involved with AACUSS is to become an active member in your division. You can see details about the divisions here and update your division choices on your membership profile. Current members who wish to express interest in an executive position should contact the Past-President for more details.
Currently there are 11 divisions:
ACADEMIC SUPPORT AND ADVISING
This division is home to Student Services professionals who support students to reach their academic and career goals. More specifically, Academic Support staff work with students to develop effective learning strategies to become self-regulated learners. This work can involve providing one-on-one coaching, presenting workshops, facilitating presentations with students, staff, and faculty, and making referrals.
Academic Advising staff work with students to make faculty and course selections and help ensure students meet graduation requirements. Often they are involved in discussions about career goals and help students map a path to their desired career.
Those who provide Advising services often provide Academic Support services as well, and vice versa. At many institutions the roles of these positions often overlap.
Sample job titles in this division may include:
This division will provide a cooperative spirit and information to its' members for those that work with students accessing accessibility/disability services at their campus and either manage or facilitate services, programs, and funding issues related to such student services. This will primarily include students with disabilities at both the certificate, diploma, undergraduate and/or post-graduate level.
Topics for discussion include, but not limited by: testing accommodations, assistive/educational technologies, alternate format testing, note-taking services, proctors, database management, case notes management, professional and/or peer tutoring services, alternate format request, learning strategies for students with disabilities, funding for the service and programs available/other funding concerns, Canada Student Grants for Students with Permanent Disabilities, defining reasonable academic accommodations, transitioning incoming and outgoing students, employment for students with disabilities, students with disabilities living in residence and/or off-campus housing, discussing upcoming conferences/workshops related to our field of work, Universal Design of Learning, Canadian Human Rights Case and other provincial, national and/or international case law that may impact our field of work.
Sample job titles in this division include:
CAREER AND EMPLOYMENT SERVICES
Members of the Career and Employment Division are comprised of career and employment student services professionals and others involved in the career development and employment of college and university students and alumni. By working together, our division helps foster professional growth and the sharing of best practices among its members. It is a venue to discuss common issues, trends and concerns of our profession and the ever changing needs of the students we work with.
Sample job titles in this division include:
The Counselling Division of AACUSS is open to anyone practicing therapeutic counselling at the Community College or University level. The Division is made up of individuals new to the profession along with others who have been practicing as therapists/psychologists on and off campus for some time. Topics brought forward range from what is happening on different campuses around mental health strategies, how to deal with a specific counselling issue, to policy development. Professional development opportunities regionally, nationally and internationally are also shared. During the Annual Conference the Counselling Division meets in person to network, share ideas and provide support and resources to each other. Anyone practicing counselling at either the University or Community College level should be a member of the Counselling Division for networking, resources and a global look at counselling in Atlantic Canada.
The Financial Aid Division represents Financial Aid Administrators and Awards Officers from colleges and universities across Atlantic Canada. Members in the division provide expertise in many different facets of scholarships and student aid, including: government student financial assistance, financial need-based aid, work-study programs, institutional merit-based awards and external awards administration.
The generalist division is for professionals who may feel their role is not quite a fit with the other listed divisions. This group comes together to connect individuals from across disciplines in student services.
HEALTH AND WELLNESS
This division is for members who work within health services at a post-secondary institution. Its members are dedicated to improving health and wellness for student populations through health promotion, providing care and support, and by working with community partners. Individuals in this group can work in such positions as: On-campus nurse or physician, Health Outreach Coordinator, Social Worker, Accommodation Coordinator, and Health Promoter. Areas of focus include: mental health, alcohol and drugs, body image, healthy lifestyle, sexual health, housing operations, housing facilities, accommodations, and stress management.
This division is for members working within residence or housing. This division is passionate about creating meaningful experiences for students living on campus. We focuses on enriching the student experience, discussing best practices, and sharing ideas. The Individuals in this group can work in such positions as: Dons, Residence Life Managers/advisers, Student Life Coordinators and Off-Campus Housing Representative. Topics of discussion include: alcohol harm reduction, programming and services, and residence conduct.
This division is for members who work with populations of international students, or students studying abroad or on exchange. The division is passionate about global connection and collaboration. Members in this division may work in positions such as: international student advisors, exchange advisors, study abroad coordinators, transition specialists, and international programmers. Topics of discussion include: transitioning into Canadian culture, supporting the needs of international students, working with host institutions, and international student programming.
SENIOR STUDENT AFFAIRS OFFICERS
Senior Student Affairs Officers (SSAO) are a varied collection of practitioners often holding senior positions or having extensive time and experience in the student services field. Not contained to one specific field, we are invariably AVP’s, Senior Directors, Counsellors, Vice Presidents and much more. The collective group holds an expertise and experience that meaningfully serves as a resource and support of student service practitioners generally. While we often look at things from higher level policy and procedure, we are at hear enthusiastic professionals who have been around, seen some things, and can be tapped for professional and personal supports and consultation.