Diane Hauser, director of advising in the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences (CLAS), is the recipient of the 2018 Lola Lopes Award for Undergraduate Student Advocacy.
The award recognizes administrators, staff, or faculty outside of their teaching role who serve as strong and effective advocates for undergraduate students and the undergraduate experience. Recipients are selected by a committee of staff, faculty, and a student.
A UI staff member since 1995, Hauser joined CLAS Academic Programs in June 2008, and since then has met one-on-one with more than 7,500 students to help them find academic programs that align with their aspirations. She has also transformed the advising experience for many more thousands of UI undergraduate students by creating—in collaboration with faculty and staff across campus—a comprehensive advising system for CLAS students that ensures a smooth transition out of first-year advising to departmental advising.
Hauser hired, trained, and now supervises a staff of more than 20 academic advisers, making it possible for almost all students in CLAS to have access to professional academic advising within their departments. Professional advisers ensure consistent advising across departments, help to inform faculty about challenges students encounter in the curriculum, and enable faculty to move beyond routine advising and use their expertise to mentor students as they progress further into their majors.
As a result of Hauser’s work, CLAS has been able to initiate mandatory advising for all CLAS sophomores, a policy that the college expects will result in higher retention and graduation rates.
Hauser has also provided leadership in the development and improvement of several tools to improve academic advising, including the MAUI notes system that is in use across the university, CLAS’s first prerequisite checking system, and an online academic probation workshop to help students in academic difficulty better understand how to improve their standing.
Hauser will receive a $1,000 honorarium and a certificate, and her name will be added to a plaque that will be displayed in the Admission Visitors Center.
The award is named in honor of Lola L. Lopes, former associate provost for undergraduate education and professor emerita of management and organizations in the Tippie College of Business. Lopes served as interim executive vice president and provost during 2007–08.