Advising at Butler

Your residential college is your home for academic advising during your four years at Princeton.  Through their connections to the college where you live, eat, and socialize, your advisers will get to know you well beyond your classes.  You will often see your faculty and peer advisers, Dr. Lazen and Dean Stirk  in the dining hall at college talks and trips and elsewhere around Butler, and they will take time to learn about your many interests, talents, goals, challenges, and concerns.  Your relationship with your college is also a four-year relationship, even though you may move into unaffiliated housing your last two years, so you will continue to receive counsel from people who have seen you grow at Princeton. 

First-year and Sophomore Advising

During your first two years at Princeton, your advising is especially closely tied to your community in Butler, and you have a whole advising team to guide you.  In addition to your faculty adviser, a Peer Academic Adviser (PAA) is assigned to your zee group in the dorms, along with a Residential College Adviser (RCA) and Resident Graduate Student (RGS), each of whom can share wisdom with you based on different experiences and areas of interest.  You see them in study breaks and around Butler and you may well be in classes or clubs with your PAA or RCA, so you will have ample opportunity to get their advice.  Last but not least, Dr. Lazen and Dean Stirk follow your progress closely and can help you with complicated matters or give you a second opinion.  Their offices are right above the Butler dining hall on the second floor of Wu Hall so that you can conveniently go to them for advice and assistance on all matters.  Dr. Lazen takes the lead for first-years and sophomores, but Dean Stirk follows your academic progress closely as well during that time and is also available to meet with you.  You can contact Dr. Lazen with questions at mlazen@princeton.edu or better yet, make an appointment to talk to him in person by going to wass.princeton.edu.

With so many advisers at Butler and beyond, how do you know who to talk to?  You’ll have a different relationship with each of your advisers, but a lot will depend on what kind of assistance or information you need.  You can learn more about all the advisers available to you at Princeton, including  pre-professional advisers and departmental representatives, by reading this Guide to Advisers

For information on how to navigate Princeton academics, entering first-years can also find excellent guidance on the Getting Started at Princeton page on the Office of the Dean of the College’s website.   Sophomore year brings new opportunities and challenges, and you can also find a Sophomore Action Plan of deadlines and activities for you to know about, as well as information about Choosing a Major on the Dean of the College website.  Of course, there’s no substitute for personalized guidance from people who know you, and your friendly advisers at Butler are here to answer any questions and help steer you in the right direction for your talents, interests, and goals!

Junior and Senior Advising

In your Junior and Senior years, the college continues to be an important part of your academic advising and support even though some of you may have moved into unaffiliated housing, and all of you will have departmental advisers with whom you choose classes and address specific departmental concerns.  Just as Dr. Lazen worked with you most closely in your first two years, Dean Stirk will take the lead in your junior and senior year.  You can see him for any question relating to academics, and his advice can be especially helpful when it comes to questions about strategies for completing distribution and degree requirements, the best resources for help with specific courses or independent work, and the best way to interact with departmental faculty advisers.  You can make an appointment with him by calling 609-258-3474 or by emailing him at dstirk@princeton.edu.   All upperclass students can benefit from the academic resources at Princeton and should be on the lookout for email from Dean Stirk about specialized support and residential college bootcamps for independent work over the January intersession and spring break.  Upperclass students will find the action plans, specific for junior and senior year to be very useful.