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Preview Counselor

Past Preview Counselors

Preview Counselor - Justin Shelley

I decided to become a Preview Counselor because I love helping other students and passing down the knowledge I have learned over the years. Here at ODU, I have had so many great influences, and Preview was a perfect opportunity for me to give back to my school and classmates.

- Justin Shelley, 2013 Preview Counselor
Preview Counselor - Jessica Farley

I decided to be a Preview Counselor because I wanted to be able to give back the great experience I had at my Preview to the incoming class.

- Jessica Farley, 2013 Preview Counselor
Preview Counselor - Cory Garner

I chose to be a Preview Counselor because it looked like a fun job. It made me step outside my comfort zone most of the time and helped me achieve some personal goals. I was able to network with many people and learn great communication and leadership skills.

- Cory Garner, 2013 Preview Counselor


Becoming a Preview Counselor

What is a Preview Counselor?

Preview Counselors are undergraduates involved with virtually every aspect of Old Dominion's orientation program for new students and their parents. Preview Counselors are different than tour guides, who work for the Office of Admissions.

What skills are required?

Preview Counselors are undergraduates involved with virtually every aspect of Old Dominion's orientation program for new students and their parents. Preview Counselors are different than tour guides, who work for the Office of Admissions.

Key skills and traits:

  • Broad knowledge of ODU
  • Campus pride
  • Ability to communicate and relate well with all people
  • Leadership and teamwork skills
  • Patience
  • Problem-solving skills
  • Common sense
  • Enthusiasm and personal warmth
  • Positive attitude

Typical duties:

  • Giving tours and directions at orientation
  • Teaching students to navigate the registration process
  • Sharing your perspective and experiences
  • Serving as a positive peer mentor and ODU representative
  • Public speaking and facilitation of group activities
  • Helping the program run smoothly (ex. checking in and seating guests)
  • Additional duties as assigned
  • Be committed to academic excellence and integrity.
  • Be supportive and actively committed to the mission and purpose of Old Dominion University, including marketing the institution in a highly positive manner.
  • Attend and successfully complete all training sessions.
  • Participate in all Freshman, Transfer, and Midyear Previews as well as required Week of Welcome events.
  • Attend all staff meetings.
  • Be knowledgeable of facilities, services and programs on campus, and be able to successfully communicate this information to new students and parents.
  • Assist with the preparation and transport of materials distributed during Preview.
  • Be visible and available to all Preview participants and maintain standards of personal conduct and dress that serve as good examples of Preview participants.
  • Attempt to prevent crisis and problem situations before they develop; keep immediate supervisors informed of these problems, and if necessary promptly report concerns and problems to appropriate University officials.
  • Assist Academic Advisors with course scheduling and registration procedures during Preview.
  • Support and emulate the University's commitment to affirmative action and equal opportunity.
  • Perform other duties as assigned, including attending dinners with families before some Preview sessions (Cafe 1201).
  • Possess an ability to understand others as well as be highly flexible in a variety of situations; Dependability and timeliness in work habits are required.
  • Abide by all policies and procedures established in the Housing and Residence Life Handbook, Housing Agreement, and University Student Code of Conduct.

The performance of these responsibilities is essential for a successful program. Failure by a Preview Counselor to perform these duties, including failure to execute all Preview activities or being absent without notice, can result in dismissal without further compensation.

What are the minimum qualifications?

  • Be an Old Dominion University student who will be enrolled in undergraduate courses during the spring semester before the Preview season and the Fall semester after the Preview season. We will confirm your registration status.
  • Have a minimum cumulative GPA of 2.5, though 2.75 is preferred. We will confirm your GPA.
  • Have no active judicial sanctions on your record. This includes judicial sanctions that are in progress or incomplete. We will confirm this with the Office of Student Conduct and Academic Integrity.
  • Be available for Preview Counselor training, which includes a spring seminar and a summer training week, and all Preview sessions with limited exceptions.

What are the compensation and benefits?

Salary: $8.50/hour (tentative) for a 4-day Preview Counselor summer training week, 14 one-day Freshman Previews, 7 one-day Transfer Previews, 2 one-day Midyear Previews (December and January), and 1-2 Week of Welcome activities.

Room: A furnished room will be provided in a residence hall. This room will be available from June through August 2014 only. Preview Counselors may elect to live off-campus. Parking decal costs are not covered by our office.

Meals: Meals will be provided when Preview days and summer training are in session. Otherwise, Preview Counselors assume their own meal costs.

Convenience: While serving as a Preview Counselor, you may take evening or online summer courses, which don't conflict with our training and work schedule. You may also work another part-time job, as long as it doesn't conflict.

Friendships: You'll work on a close-knit team. You'll also meet thousands of new students!

Excitement: From training sessions with the Outdoor Adventure Program to speaking in front of hundreds of people, you'll have plenty of fun and opportunities to stretch your limits!

Skills: You'll gain experience with public speaking, mentoring, teaching, leadership, and problem-solving.

Networking: You'll meet academic advisors, faculty and staff members from across the university. The position often leads to other leadership opportunities on campus!

When do Preview Counselors work?

On Preview days, you will work approximately 7 a.m. to 5 p.m. There are 21 Preview days over the summer, from May through August. Additionally, there are 2 midyear Preview days in December and January. If you'd like to see the exact dates, please email preview@odu.edu. We don't publish them on our website until mid-March, but we will provide them to applicants as needed.

How do I apply?

Step 1: Attend an information session.

This is not required but is strongly recommended.

Step 2: Submit your application online.

The application for the summer season becomes available in January. Please take your time and answer all questions completely. We suggest writing your answers in a program such as Microsoft Word and using spell- and grammar-check before pasting them into the online application.

Step 3: Sign up for a group interview.

Following the application due date, we will invite selected candidates to participate in a group interview in February. If you are selected for a group interview, you will receive an email from our office to ask your preferred date. Note: Preference may be given to applicants with the preferred GPA of 2.75 or above.

Step 4: Sign up for an individual interview.

Following group interviews, we will invite some candidates to participate in individual interviews in February. If you are selected for an individual interview, you will receive an email from our office to ask for your preferred date.

Step 5: Receive a decision email.

We will send decision emails in late February or early March. We hire a well-rounded staff of 14 Preview Counselors (and 3-4 alternates). We try to balance gender identity, age, ethnicity, residents and commuters, extroverts and introverts, students with leadership experience and those who are new to campus involvement, students who entered as transfers and students who entered as freshmen, and returning and new staff members. We believe this diversity reflects the multicultural nature of our campus. However, the most important things are the attitude and skills that you bring.