ARSEE 2019 addresses professionalization, technology, compliance

October 21, 2019
  • AACRAO News
  • arsee
  • partners
large group of people pose for a photo

by Luisa Havens Gerardo, AACRAO President

The 12th annual meeting of ARSEE (Associacion de Responsables the Servicios Escolares y Estudiantiles) was held in beautiful Cancun from the 9th through the 11th of October.  Over 380 professionals in the areas of academic and student support services from all over Mexico convene yearly in community to discuss current higher education issues and best practices. 

Sound familiar? That is because ARSEE is AACRAO’s sister institution in Mexico.

As AACRAO president, I had the privilege to attend the conference to present a plenary session titled, "Usos prácticos de la analítica académica en la gestión universitaria y el desempeño estudiantil," covering the use of analytics in the administration of student and academic services. Additionally, I was able to attend many sessions and plenaries during the 3-day conference. This allowed me to learn much more about the wonderful work our colleagues are doing at their institutions, the great ingenuity that they employ to provide excellent service to the students, faculty and staff they serve and, most notably, the challenges that they encounter while exercising our professions.

I also realized that we have many commonalities in terms of these challenges; the following among the most noteworthy:

  • Compliance and regulatory demands. With a new set of regulations freshly approved by the federal authorities on September 30th, there was much thoughtful conversation around the impact to institutions and professionals alike.  Affecting the entirety of the education sector in their country, the new set of legislative mandates has added uncertainly as to what is in store to ensure compliance. 

  • Keeping up with technology and innovation. I learned about how institutions have harnessed technology to not only provide a better way of doing business but also to improve student services and streamline processes to better serve internal constituencies.   Witnessing their ingenuity in using existing tools in new ways was great, but I have to admit, hearing conversations about block-chain in Spanish was the best treat of all!

  • Professionalizing the profession. An important theme around the conference was around professionalization of their work within and across the institutional contexts of higher education and the role that ARSEE and its members play in those efforts.  Talks of credentialing and of competencies, proficiencies and standards were part of almost every gathering during the conference. To be able to share some of the tools and efforts AACRAO has sponsored in this area was impactful.

Another great opportunity that attending the conference afforded me was to be able to renew the MOU between AACRAO and ARSEE originally signed 8 years ago. The renewed agreement has at its core the understanding that collaboration around common interests in the areas of research, professional services and content will continue; while exploring new ways to expand the exchange of people, ideas and best practices in the interest of advancing our professions notwithstanding national borders. I do not know of a better way to create value to our respective organizations than to diligently pursue expanding on this work in the near future. 

To my colleagues in ARSEE, felicidades on your 12th year anniversary and ¡salud! to many more years of fruitful collaboration!