TIFTON-Dr. Janet Koposko, associate professor from the Department of Rural Studies in the Abraham Baldwin Agricultural College School of Arts and Sciences, has been selected as the 2023 recipient W. Bruce and Rosalyn Ray Donaldson Excellence in Advising Award Winner.
“Advising is something that is not always tangible and it’s hard to document and show evidence that you’re doing it well,” Koposko said. “Getting this award is important to me because it’s a recognition that the hard work is paying off. I could not do it without the team in Academic Support and my colleagues who are always around to have conversations about advising and help support each other.”
Koposko earned her B.A. from California University of Pennsylvania, and both her M.S. and Ph.D. in Psychology from Oklahoma State University.
The criteria for the W. Bruce and Rosalyn Ray Donaldson Excellence in Advising Award includes strong interpersonal skills, a caring attitude toward advisees, mastery of institutional regulations and policies and procedures, the ability to engage in career and life planning versus simply course scheduling, and availability to advisees.
Other factors in considering this recognition include peer perception of nominee’s advising skills, and student advisee evaluations. This recognition includes a monetary award and commemorative plaque. It was first presented at the 2000 Honors Day ceremony.
One advisee summed up Koposko’s advising skills by saying, “She has been a steppingstone throughout my college years here at ABAC. She has given me clear advisement and has directed me the right way. She is very approachable, allows me to contact her whenever I needed.”
Another advisee added, “What I have found to be her best asset is her way of caring for her students and advisees. As her advisee, she makes me feel confident and prepared for the semester ahead.”
Koposko’s dean and department head agreed. “She has demonstrated a strong commitment to her students’ success. She establishes a rapport with them and provides guidance that is tailored to their academic and career goals. Her approach is holistic and empowering, and she has helped many students pursue attainable goals.”
Her advising philosophy reveals a commitment to being an active member of the college community. She occasionally joins a Student Government Association meeting to hear student concerns, attends choir and band concerts, and visits with students during club days. These connections allow her to advise and mentor students outside the standard bi-annual office meeting.
Another advising strategy calls on her to recognize that success cannot be defined by timeliness alone. Strategies for a non-traditional student taking a reduced course load due to family or job commitments differ from one for an 18-year-old at the start of their college experience. Koposko also recognizes that students with big dreams can be guided to more manageable expectations within their reach without losing sight of their overall goals.
ABAC Associate Professor Emerita of English Rosalyn Ray Donaldson presented the award.