The program is aimed at helping students to navigate college life, designed to enhance their transition to the university setting, and to assist them to become successful in their academic pursuits. Much of that work involves helping students to find their way in selecting a major and potential career.
But the Marine is about to help his own generation in a similar fashion: as an academic advisor to non-traditional students and veterans over the age of 25.
“I am most excited to work with a new demographic of students, and help these students navigate through the coursework for various majors,” said Rosales. “In addition, I look forward to helping students that are on academic probation, work on academic success plans and achieve their goals to be academically eligible for a given major, such as business, education, engineering.”
Rosales spent a couple of years in college before enlisting in the Marines and heading to boot camp. After spending twelve years in the military, he is discovering his own career path—by helping others find theirs.
“The big difference between this role (Academic Adviser) and my role as a Success Coach is that I am able to focus on the academic advising portion of the job,” he said. “Students will be able to work with me, and together, we will perform degree audits, create schedules, and work towards the desired GPA.”
Rosales graduated in 2012 with a master’s of education degree in higher education. The UT alumnus is now reaching back to assist fellow students. If anyone can relate, it’s him. He’s already walked in their shoes—or military boots.
“This is an ideal fit for me, because I earned both my baccalaureate and Masters degrees with the assistance of educational benefits, post 9/11 GI Bill,” he said. “I will be working with adult students that have families, full-time jobs, and various other demands outside their academic coursework, and I am able to not only relate, but also apply theory to practice as I have been balancing a similar schedule.”
Rosales already is seeing success in his higher ed career, as he was recently nominated for the 20 under 40 Community Leadership Award and was recognized by his peers at UT as Outstanding Staff Member (Shining Star Award) for his work with students on campus.
“This is a great fit for both me, personally and professionally. Learning the academic side of higher education has been very challenging, yet rewarding throughout my short career in higher ed,” he said. “Between being a success coach and academic advisor, I have been gaining a skill set that will prepare me, or has been preparing me to be a great resourceful and knowledgeable staff member for students on any campus.”
Rosales has higher aspirations for his career. He is finishing his coursework toward a Ph.D. in Educational Theory and Social Foundations at UT. His goal is to eventually become a leading researcher in education across the nation, with a focus on underrepresented students, such as Latinos, African-Americans, and veterans.
Rosales is juggling two careers, as he still serves his country in the U.S. Marine Corps as the Company First Sergeant for Bridge Company Alpha, located in Battle Creek, Michigan.
“Parts of my responsibilities include developing, mentoring and encouraging the professional development of Bridge Company Alpha Marines through counseling, instruction, and leadership by example,” he explained. “Also, in conjunction with the Company Executive Officer, I track all accountability, training accomplishments, and other administrative information during drill weekends in order to complete reporting requirements.”
Rosales also serves as an advisor to the UT Latino Student Union (LSU). At his age, his role may be as a big brother figure to many of the young Latinos.
“In this role, I serve as the campus liaison for the students and help them stay on track as a student organization and in the classroom,” he said. “Being a past president of this organization, I take this role very seriously and do my best to serve the needs of the students.”
In addition, he serves as a mentor to several students on campus, particularly with members of LSU and Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity. He stated he “works a lot off the clock, one-on-one with students,” helping them adjust to the demands of college and the transition that occurs.
He has a nine-year old daughter Jordan and spends what little spare time he has coaching her third and fourth grade basketball team. He also tries to “keep up with the demands of her schedule, as she’s an athlete that participates in basketball, tennis, golf and cheer.”
Rosales is the youngest of four children to Robert and Rosa Rosales. He graduated from Waite High School and still lives in East Toledo.