Celebrate “Careers in Students Affairs Month”, featuring thoughts from UIS Staff working in student affairs and Students exploring a future career in student affairs.


The Division of Student Affairs is a team of professionals dedicated to the mission of UIS who contributes to the personal and professional development of students. Programs and services offered inspire students to take ownership of self and social responsibility, to become globally aware citizens and appreciate human diversity, and enhance holistic development and the students’ overall well-being. “Students First!” is the philosophy that inspires, empowers and unites us.

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What is Student Affairs?

Student Affairs staff members provide services and support for students outside of the classroom in order to enhance the student experience:

Functional Areas within Student Affairs @ UIS

What major do I need to have?

Any major can lead to a career in student affairs. Therefore, if you are a senior in biomedical sciences, there is no need to make a quick change of major and potentially prolong your undergraduate experience. Most professionals in student affairs do not discover the field until they are experiencing college themselves. This is what makes graduate education so important. Graduate school will give you an opportunity to view the college experience and how to serve students from a vantage point where you are observing and supporting undergraduate students.

You will find in graduate school that fellow students will come from a wide variety of undergraduate majors. What is most important heading into graduate school is maintaining a strong undergraduate GPA, exhibiting strong writing skills, and taking advantage of classroom opportunities to expand your critical thinking and research skills. All of these experiences will help you in graduate school.

What can I do as an undergrad if I am interested in Student Affairs?

Although many student affairs positions require a Masters Degree, you can gain valuable experiences as an undergrad that will give you the experience to help prepare you for a career in Student Affairs.

UIS Job Opportunities – Check Student Employment website for departmental job descriptions and check Career Connect for current available job opportunities.

Some typical job descriptions by department within Student Affairs are:

Leadership Opportunities

RHA aims to represent interests and concerns of residents, propose policies consistent with resident interests, provide programming for residents, serve as directed by the Association, attend SGA meetings, provide or assign representation at the meetings of other student associations and campus organizations, submit a proposed yearly budget to UIS Residence Life and, authorize RHA expenditures.

  • Stories of Leadership Lived from students
  • Student Leadership Recognition Award – The Diversity Center recognizes a group of persons who have held critical leadership roles and have furthered the development of our professional society.

College graduates must demonstrate essential leadership competencies in order to be successful in their time after UIS. In order to promote this development, the UIS LEAD program has been created. Student Life, along with many campus partners is launching a new Leadership Program!

Board Member and involvement

provides many opportunities for students to gain leadership skills

is a service and leadership program with a first year living-learning community located in Lincoln Residence Hall.

Attend a Workshop or Conference

Held in October – Check with the Vice Chancellors office at 206-6581

The Division of Student Affairs at the University of Illinois Springfield hosted its annual leadership retreat

Career mentoring is an extremely beneficial and powerful tool that is sometimes overlooked. Many universities, employers, organizations offer a formal mentoring program.

Develop a network of friends at UIS. Learn about campus resources. The mentor program is for LGBTQ and allied first year, transfer, and new graduate students. New students are paired with upper class students.

is a program for First-Generation college students that are defined as students whose parents/guardians have not graduated from a four year college or institution. Necessary Steps is designed to assist in the transition from high school to college, as well as, transforming our students into scholars.

The Office of New Student Orientation employs a number of students to assist with its orientation and family programming. There are three levels of undergraduate student positions within the Orientation Team (O-Team)

Join a Student Affairs Organization

Many National Organizations allow students to join.  Fees are surprisingly low for undergraduate students, and this opens the door to the resources that the organization can offer you in your decision-making process.

Helpful Websites