Checking in with students is at the top of Rita Lester’s daily to-do list.
“Teaching is the side job,” said Lester, Professor of Religion. “The advising is what I love.”
Lester has been named Faculty Advisor of the Year for the 2019-2020 academic year. Student nominators said they see Lester often and when they don’t, they can always expect a message from her in their email inboxes.
“The thought of an advisor who you see once a semester for 20 minutes is foreign to me,” said one student nominator. “If I didn’t see Dr. Lester for a few days, I would get a ‘just checking to see if you are good’ email from her.”
Those check-ins proved to be critical last spring when NWU switched to distance learning due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Lester called each of her advisees during their time away to make certain they were doing ok.
“Quite honestly, I don’t know where I would be without Dr. Rita Lester as my academic advisor,” said another student nominator.