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Careers in Student Affairs: A Holistic Guide to Professional Development in Higher Education

Career and Workforce Development Supporting the Profession Professional Standards Division Mid-Level
September 1, 2017 Peggy Holzweiss Kelli Peck Parrott

Careers in Student Affairs provides a comprehensive look at being a higher education administrator. Integrating perspectives from both research and practical application, this reader-friendly book addresses contemporary issues in the higher education environment that are not typically covered in the graduate curriculum but that employers expect student affairs professionals to be prepared for from their first position and beyond.

Written for both new professionals and those transitioning to further levels of leadership, Careers in Student Affairs covers a broad cross section of topics that apply to various levels of experience. The book is filled with information and advice to assist practitioners in developing plans for career longevity and success. Each chapter includes questions for reflection to help readers develop a career plan.

The book is organized into two parts. The first part focuses on professional per­formance and explores issues such as: trends and contemporary challenges in the higher education field; developing professionalism and support networks; and ways to navigate important issues such as organizational cultures, politics, con­flicts, and ethics. The second part discusses professional development, with chapters that delve into: defining per­sonal and professional success; advancing a career in student affairs; becoming an effective supervisor; transitioning to faculty roles; and giving back to the profession. Each of these subjects is addressed from the perspective of theory, research, and practice. In addition, each chapter reviews topic-specific supervisory skills to help professionals cultivate good strategies.

The field of higher education administration offers a wide range of career stages and pathways, and professionals must take a proactive approach to their career development. Careers in Student Affairs is an essential text for graduate students in higher education and student affairs graduate programs, graduate preparation faculty who teach professional development topics, professionals seeking to transition to more advanced roles, as well as professionals who want to build their competencies with an eye toward senior-level positions, executive leadership, and faculty roles.

Praise for Careers in Student Affairs

 “Careers in Student Affairs arrives at precisely the right moment for our profession. Each chapter brings research to life, illuminating how best to decipher institutional cultures. Readers will be asked to think deeply about complex and difficult subjects in fresh, new ways, and will be rewarded with enhanced confidence in their decision making. I can envision those new to the field engaging with their supervisors and colleagues around this book as a welcome, shared experience. This book is a must-read for all of us who seek to build a community of next generation student affairs thinkers and doers.” —Felice Dublon, Vice President and Dean of Student Affairs, School of the Art Institute of Chicago

“This text is a fabulous next step for the existing literature on student affairs career practice and advancement, as it takes into account a wide spectrum of career stages and pathways. The authors adeptly ameliorate critical issues relevant to a range of higher education administrators both theoretically and practically, which increases understanding and skill development in essential career areas.” —Brett Perozzi, Associate Vice President for Student Affairs, Weber State University

“This book clearly articulates the advice and career guidance student affairs professionals commonly seek. The knowledge and insights the authors have gained from decades of experience are woven together in a manner that promotes immediate application to the myriad of issues that challenge student affairs professionals on a daily basis. Individuals in early stages of their career development as well as experienced professionals will find this book to be an essential reference that ‘demystifies’ the unwritten operating rules for professionals in higher education. Each topic is addressed with a perfect blend of theory, research, and real world application.” —Kathryn T. Hutchinson, Vice President of Student Affairs, St. John’s University

“Careers in Student Affairs provides a valuable insider's look at many important areas of the profession that are rarely discussed in such detail. The authors use theoretical frameworks to understand and inform practical issues, which brings the classroom closer to the field. Faculty, new professionals, mid-level professionals, and senior-level professionals will all benefit from reading it.” —Timothy Ecklund, Chair, NASPA Faculty Council

“Given the interest in socialization and a growing base of literature about student affairs professional development, Careers in Student Affairs: A Holistic Guide to Professional Development in Higher Education, edited by Holzweiss and Parrott, is certainly a welcome addition to the professional's bookshelf. The book is both theoretical and practical, applying to educators with a range of backgrounds and experiences. The authors are well-known leaders of student affairs practice. One of the best attributes of the book is how it pulls in literature from other disciplines outside of student affairs to address very relevant professional development issues, such as managing institutional culture and politics.” Journal of College Student Development


Paperback | 2017 | 368 pages

ISBN: 978-0-931654-64-0

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