From personal experience, the academic advisors here at Michigan do not give such great advice. When they are not extremely knowledgable about your specific subject area, it makes it very difficult for them to advise you on what courses to take and what steps to take in the direction you would eventually like to be. However, the Writing Minor advisors are a different story. Because they are not only advisors, but also professors in this very specific program, they know exactly what we are going through and are able to advise us as to how to better improve our writing or how to better organize our portfolios in a way to more appropriately present ourselves as writers.
Just before Thanksgiving break, I met with my advisor with some questions in hand. As we sat down, she asked me about my favorite parts of the Gateway Course and she asked about my outside interests. I showed her what I had done of my E-Portfolio, and we discussed my pathway through the re-purposing and re-mediating projects. She gave me insight into the professional writing world and suggested that I really focus on showing my audience something that they have never seen before – presenting new information, or presenting it in a way that seems fresh. As for the E-Portfolio, we discussed the major differences between this beginning portfolio and the portfolios we will create in the Capstone Course. My advisor said she always tells students at the Capstone level to think back to what they have gone through since their Gateway Portfolio, or how their life has changed in any way. We discussed my study abroad plans, and she told me that my experiences from living in and traveling around South America could certainly be a great way to shape my Capstone portfolio.
Although this is thinking ahead, she gave me some great advice to get me thinking through the next year of the minor. I suggest you all meet with your Writing Minor Advisors if you have not yet done so!