Note: This post first appeared May 20, 2022 on the Adviser Online Community blog.

Each year we say goodbye to amazing Honor Society and NatStuCo advisers who are handing over the reins to their chapters and councils at the close of school. A little bit of planning for those departures will go a long way to help new advisers transition more smoothly into their roles and keep the groups’ momentum going. If possible before the school year ends, schedule a time to meet with the incoming adviser. If the new adviser is not yet confirmed, have a transition meeting with the principal or other assigned administrator.

Here are 5 tips highlighting information to share or actions to take to help new advisers get off to a good start next year:

1. Share the location (and any access passwords) of key council or chapter documents such as member and officer rosters, bylaws, constitution, budgets, meeting minutes, letter templates, applications, and forms, etc. Transfer or add the new adviser to online member groups and file storage.

2. Provide a calendar showing monthly events and activities (including any over the summer), and timelines for major ones such as selections and elections that show when prep work begins. Review any ongoing or unfinished projects.

3. Identify strategic partners within the school who the new adviser will work with during the year. These will include persons in administrator, faculty, and general staff roles who can be called upon for assistance and guidance.

4. Honor Society selections and student council elections are major activities that advisers oversee. Highlight the key elements and related policies and practices that advisers need to be familiar with before those take place. Also, share or point out forms used as part of the selection and election processes and provide samples of past student and parent communications.

5. Update your NHS, NJHS, or NatStuCo accounts to reflect the most current adviser information and confirm membership has been renewed for the coming school year. If you have already renewed for 2022-23, simply complete and submit an Adviser/Principal Change Form with the new information (form is the same for all programs).

Are you a new adviser? Have tips of your own to share?
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