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Students/Faculty News Kevin Storr July 27, 2021

Rachel Mars, lead academic advisor for our B.S. in Health Care Management program, has been elected president-elect of the UAB Council of Academic Advisors. She is the first from the School of Health Professions to hold a leadership role in this organization.

“It is a big honor to be elected because this is a vote from my fellow advisors across UAB and it is a huge responsibility because they trust me to be an advocate for them and our students,” said Mars.

The UAB CAA is open to all faculty and staff who work directly with academic advising. Leadership advises the Provost and other administration officers and represents advisors in general interest and any concerns they may have.

Serving the CAA is a three-year commitment as she moves to president for 2022-23 and then to past president for 2023-24. But for Mars, the continuous service is the entire point of serving.

“This is not just a position to hold,” said Mars, whose tenure as president-elect began July 1, 2021. “I want to grow our community of advisors, create opportunities for professional development – like hosting a state-wide conference, and build a strong foundation where one day we have a strong voice at UAB much like the faculty and staff senates.”

Mars is also a highly respected advisor within NACADA: The Global Community for Academic Advising. This fall she is delivering a presentation at the NACADA Annual Conference where more than 13,000 advisors from across the globe will be in attendance. 

In addition, she was featured in the July 3rd edition of their podcast “Adventures in Advising with Colum and Matt.” She is in the second half of the episode titled “Energizing Institutions” and appears at the 46-minute mark.

In the podcast, she talks about ‘flipped advising’ – where advisors use videos, modules and exercises to reach students 24/7. Mars delves into the strategies and the challenges in explaining policies, answering questions, and supporting the advising process in the modern interactive digital world of today’s university student.

Overall, Mars is thankful for the opportunity to continue to advocate for advisors and students at UAB as she leads the CAA and networks through her NACADA relationships.

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