Student Affairs Institute

The Student Affairs Institute (SAI) was launched in the fall of 2008.  The objectives of the SAI included:

  1. Provide staff (in both support and management roles) with staff development programs that are customized to their needs.
  2. Provide staff with information that will help them understand their role in the Division of Student Affairs and FAU.
  3. Introduce staff to others in the division with common work goals or duties.
  4. Provide an intensive learning experience that motivates staff and helps them to be more effective in doing their job.
  5. Provide senior staff within the Division of Student Affairs with opportunities to teach and facilitate learning.


The institute audience will include support staff, new professional staff, and middle-management staff.  Each year, the institute will be organized and presented for one of these three audiences.  The definition of these staff is as follows:

  • Support Staff - Staff with front line responsibilities, trade/craft workers, custodians, administrative support roles and are generally SP positions.
  • New Professionals - New staff with less than 5 years of experience in Student Affairs and/or higher education.
  • Mid-Managers - Supervisors, coordinators, assistant directors, associate directors with advanced degree(s) and leadership responsibilities for their department.

Program Curriculum

Community Service & Capstone Experience:  Exploring the interrelationship between the institution and community, why this relationship is essential, and how leaders can become involved in enhancing this important objective.  A capstone project involving direct service to the community will be implemented by each class.

Customer Service:  Understanding the purpose for good service and how it defines the organization to the campus community.  Exploring the various avenues and methods of delivering service and how to best enhance these skills in employees and students.

Diversity:  Examining the value of diversity within the institution, and how to enhance and/or utilize effectively the diversity that exists at FAU.

Financial & Human Resources:  Developing knowledge of how planning and budget are executed through the Controller, Human Resources, and Payroll Departments.  Expand the appreciation for how resources are distributed throughout the institution.

Orientation to Student Affairs:  Understanding of the structure, personnel, and overall interrelationship between areas of Student Affairs, as well as the connection of Student Affairs to the overall institution.

Student & Adult Development Theory:  Understanding of the different ways in which student and adults develop, and how these different theories are realized through the practice of our daily work in Student Affairs.

Supervision:  Reviewing the rules, policies, and theories of effective supervision, and practicing the skills involved in effectively guiding employees toward the overall department objective.  Examining the various complex issues involved in working with staff.

Teambuilding:  Understanding of the principles and values of teamwork with other staff, and with students, and learning new methods for enhancing the team as a leader.  Developing the teamwork within the class itself will also be emphasized.

Values & Ethics:  Exploring how professional values and ethics of Student Affairs drive practice.  Examining the manner in which ethical questions are exploring through reflective thinking and decisive action which embrace the values of the institution and Student Affairs.

Faculty Selection Criteria

A call for faculty for the institute will be implemented.  Applications will ask potential faculty to express their desire and qualifications for the position, and will require the stated support of the candidate's supervisor and department.  The total number of faculty selected would be between five and seven.  Faculty must apply each year for the institute, even if they served on the faculty the previous year.  The Program Co-chair(s) will be in charge of choosing faculty for the institute, and may employ a selection committee for reviewing and interviewing finalists.


Each year, the institute will be focused on one of the three primary groups - support staff, new professionals and middle managers.  Twenty-twenty five (20-25) participants would be accepted for the institute, which represents a maximum of 10% of the total number of staff in the Division of Student Affairs.  Applicants should present a case for their commitment to learning more, interest in advancement or their potential for serving the Division in a more meaningful way.  Specific criteria for each audience will be defined and the institute will be promoted throughout the division.  Participants will be selected by the Program Co-chair(s), with input of the Faculty and other volunteers.

FAU Campuses: Boca Raton/Davie/Dania Beach/Fort Lauderdale/Jupiter/Treasure Coast Boca Raton Campus Danie Beach Campus Davie Campus Fort Lauderdale Campus Harbor Branch Campus Jupiter Campus Treasure Campus
 Last Modified 8/26/12