Campus News

'Behind the Blue': Robert Hayes on the pivotal role of UK’s student advisors

LEXINGTON, Ky. (April 19, 2024) — Robert Hayes is the executive director of Student Community Resources and Services in the UK Office for Student Success. His expertise and mission lies in providing support to first-generation students and offering academic advising within the College of Arts and Sciences.

He believes academic advisors serve as critical touchpoints for students, ensuring they navigate the complexities of higher education seamlessly. From pre-matriculation meetings to summer orientations, these interactions lay the groundwork for student success.

Additionally, Hayes sees the unique challenges faced by first-generation students, particularly with disparities in social capital. While these students may lack the familial frame of reference for higher education, he highlights the immense growth potential they possess.

On this episode of "Behind the Blue," Hayes discusses the pivotal role advisors play as the bridge between students and the myriad of resources available to them, the evolving narrative around first-generation student research, and how institutions are shifting towards an assets-based approach, empowering students to embrace their journey with confidence.

"Behind the Blue" is available on iTunes, Google Play and Spotify. Become a subscriber to receive new episodes of “Behind the Blue” each week. UK’s latest medical breakthroughs, research, artists and writers will be featured, along with the most important news impacting the university.

Transcripts for this or other episodes of Behind the Blue can be downloaded from the show’s blog page.

To discover what’s wildly possible at the University of Kentucky, click here.

As the state’s flagship, land-grant institution, the University of Kentucky exists to advance the Commonwealth. We do that by preparing the next generation of leaders — placing students at the heart of everything we do — and transforming the lives of Kentuckians through education, research and creative work, service and health care. We pride ourselves on being a catalyst for breakthroughs and a force for healing, a place where ingenuity unfolds. It's all made possible by our people — visionaries, disruptors and pioneers — who make up 200 academic programs, a $476.5 million research and development enterprise and a world-class medical center, all on one campus.   

In 2022, UK was ranked by Forbes as one of the “Best Employers for New Grads” and named a “Diversity Champion” by INSIGHT into Diversity, a testament to our commitment to advance Kentucky and create a community of belonging for everyone. While our mission looks different in many ways than it did in 1865, the vision of service to our Commonwealth and the world remains the same. We are the University for Kentucky.