PRASE project will focus on academic advising

Engage, sustain, transform poster

Gary Brewer, vice-president finance & administration, and Patrick Monahan, vice-president academic & provost, have issued this update to the York community on the Services for Students stream of PRASE (Process Re-engineering & Service Enhancement) project.

York University has set ambitious goals around the quality of the education we provide. To that end, we have committed to increasing the comprehensiveness of the University, improving the student experience and to becoming more fully engaged with the community. However, as we are all aware, York is operating within a very challenging fiscal context. As a result, our future success is contingent on a critical review of how we manage our resources and deliver services. The Process Re-engineering & Service Enhancement Program (PRASE) was initiated in 2010 to help York become more efficient and effective.

PRASE Phase II is focused on five “streams”: accountability and budget planning; information technology; human resources/finance/procurement/services for researchers; services for students; and creating a better workplace. Following extensive consultations with York students, faculty and staff, the Services for Students stream is focusing on six priorities for student service enhancement in 2012-13:

  • Academic advising
  • Petitions processing
  • First-year transition
  • OSAP processes
  • Services for international students
  • On-campus student employment

Successfully delivering on these projects will greatly improve the quality of undergraduate student experience at York.  For more detailed information about each of these initiatives, including work plans, deliverables and expected benefits, visit the PRASE website.

The Academic Advising Project is specifically intended to be transformational. It is ambitious and addresses key White Paper priorities that are critical to York’s capacity to evolve and embrace learning in the 21st century. We know that excellent, responsive academic advising is a key factor in facilitating student success. As a result, a PRASE working group will be established by the provost next fall to examine how advising is currently being delivered across our campus, and to recommend improvements. The aim is to establish best practices that contribute to seamless and rewarding academic experiences.

The first phase of this project will involve information gathering and extensive consultations with key academic and non-academic stakeholders. To that end, Lara Ubaldi has been appointed to the full-time role of project manager for a period of two years, effective June 1. Lara has two undergraduate degrees from York and completed a graduate degree at the University of Toronto. She is passionate about student success and is a long-serving York employee; she has been a student leader, a Residence Life tutor, and a management employee accountable for academic governance and student advising. Lara is a great listener who prioritizes consultation and has earned a reputation for building consensus around shared objectives.

For more information about PRASE, the Services for Students stream, and/or the Academic Advising project, please contact Janet Morrison, PRASE project director, Services for Students, at, or Susan Vail, associate vice-president, Teaching & Learning, at