Program faculty must buy-in to the event for it to be successful. Their ability to see the event as important and valuable for students will reflect in student engagement (National Survey of Student Engagement [NSSE], 2007). Collectively faculty members can ensure the event successful and a high-impact experience for students by:
- • Requiring students to participate in the event.
- • Volunteering at the event to support the event and develop relationships with students in the major.
- • Developing meaningful assignments to assist students participating in the event.
- • Cultivating relationships with students and community agencies at the event.
Faculty support is imperative to execute the event and garner support from the larger university.
Although not required, support from the university makes a larger statement to event participants regarding the event’s importance and the university’s willingness to partner with the community. University support can come in the means of:
- • funding;
- • space provisions;
- • administrative support; and
- • programmatic contributions.
For example, at past Developing Connections events, the college has provided refreshments and other campus offices such as the Office of Graduate Studies and Career Services have lent their expertise by sending representatives to orchestrate professional development roundtables.