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Franklin advisors receive UGA advising awards

Alan Flurry

Two Franklin College of Arts and Sciences academic advisors have received 2023-2024 UGA Outstanding Undergraduate Academic Advising AwardsMatt Jordan and Ryan Smith were nominated by the Franklin College and selected by a committee of three Student Government Association representatives along with previous advising award winners.

This is the third year in a row an advisor from the Franklin College Office of Student Academic Services has won the UGA Outstanding New Advisor Award (and the fourth time in the last five years). Franklin advisors have also won three of the last four UGA Outstanding Advisor Awards.

"Service to students across our college is job one – a continual and enormous task that requires an experienced, knowledgeable, empathetic, and innovative advising staff," said Anna Stenport, dean of the Franklin College. "This level of sustained excellence is a testament to their professionalism and I congratulate Matt and Ryan on this recognition of their achievements and leadership."

Matt Jordan, UGA’s Outstanding Professional Advisor, advises more than 300 students in the Franklin College. Jordan began working in Franklin College in 2019 as an advisor for psychology majors, and he began advising biology majors in 2021. He also assists students on the pre-professional track and Double Dawgs pathways. In addition to these duties, he has served as a retention advisor in the Franklin College for students on academic probation and has worked with the biology advising team to assess and revise degree program requirements. Matt was also the recipient of the 2023-2024 Franklin College Outstanding Academic Advisor Award.

"These awards resonate with me specifically because they originate with student nominations," Jordan said. "That is, I would not have been eligible unless students found my work exceptional. For someone who works almost exclusively with students, that means everything."

Ryan Smith, UGA’s Outstanding New Advisor, advises more than 200 students seeking degrees in geography, interdisciplinary art, and art with areas of emphasis in interior design, photography, and printmaking. Smith began advising at UGA in September 2021.

Smith created, proposed, and implemented the Franklin College New Advisor Mentor Program in 2023. This program was designed for Franklin College advisors in their first year to obtain mentorship from experienced advisors. Smith pairs each new advisor with an experienced advisor who has volunteered to participate and facilitates meetings for the mentees and mentors as a group. 

"I am beyond grateful to all my students and colleagues who have supported me since the day I started this position," Smith said. "I must admit that being a part of the School of Art and the Geography Department and being surrounded by such incredible advisors in Franklin College feels like having a cheat code for advising. This award is a tremendous honor that would not have happened without so many wonderful colleagues across our college."

Jordan and Smith now move forward as UGA nominees for the National Academic Advising Associationawards and recognition.

“Ryan and Matt consistently demonstrate excellence in every facet of their academic advising roles and have made significant contributions to their departments and the entire college," said Diane Miller, director of the Office of Student Academic Services." They have had a profound and lasting impact through their support, caring, and commitment to their students, and I feel tremendously fortunate to have them on my team.”     

Image: Outstanding Professional Advisor: Matt Jordan, Franklin College of Arts and Sciences



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