New advising center will evolve with student needs

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The Advising Center is a one-woman operation. Gretchen Potter is working to find and fit the needs of Pacific students when it comes to credit requirements.

Potter is available on the first floor of Bates House to help students find ways to meet all the credit requirements on time to graduate. She can also help with transfer issues, how to declare a major, how to switch a major, how credits relate to financial aid, credits with traveling abroad and organizing focal studies requirements.

What Potter does till the end of this spring semester will depend on the needs of the Registrar’s Office. But she is planning on finding exactly what role the Advising Center can be for Pacific. At the time of publication, there is no mission statement or official description of what the Advising Center can do for students.

“That’s part of what intrigued me about the job,” said Potter. “I get to create something brand new.”

Potter said she will be gathering information on how she can best set up the model for advising in a way that will best benefit the students of Pacific. Once she gets a feel for how to best advise the students of Pacific, Potter will be able to write a mission statement and make long-term goals for the Advising Center.

But some work has already been done. She worked with members of the College of Arts and Sciences and Marketing to expand the description for focal studies.

Potter is also in support of registration being online for the first time this semester. She is optimistic about people’s reaction to the process being online.

“Once people get used to the process I think people are gonna love it,” said Potter.

She also added that online registration will be extremely helpful for students traveling abroad and that many will find the ability to manage classes from a distance helpful in time.

With a Facebook page in place the Advising Center is branching out to students. Potter said the Facebook page is an easy way for students to ask questions and get them answered fast. And word of the Advising Center is growing.

“It’s getting a steady stream of foot traffic,” said Potter.

As the Advising Center finds its role at Pacific this semester, Potter is expecting more activity in the fall.

To plan an advising appointment with Potter call the Advising Center line at (503) 352-2800 or email Potter directly at


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